Elderly man on the phone

How CSAS helped convict a gang who defrauded pensioners

According to the National Crime Agency, fraud remains the most commonly experienced crime in the UK, with an estimated annual overall cost of £190 billion.

West Yorkshire and Humberside Police used CSAS to assist in the investigation of a conspiracy to defraud six elderly victims out of £39,500.

A team of six suspects travelled to Humberside purporting to be police officers with the intention of defrauding vulnerable victims. During the course of three days, over 100 potential victims were contacted by a number of different mobile phones that were unregistered.

Some of these phones were using cells in the Humberside area but some were also using cells in London, meaning there were other suspects that needed to be identified. As suspects were using their personal phones as well as ‘burner’ phones during the course of the conspiracy period, it was possible to undertake some co-location analysis using CSAS.

Due to the high volume of cell site data that had been requested for the case, to have mapped and conducted cell site analysis manually would not have been feasible within time constraints. By using the co-location analytics function in CSAS, another four co-locating telephones were identified within a day, with further research being conducted and four more suspects being identified.

All four suspects were charged and brought to trial. During the trial further exhibits were required, all involving telecoms data. With the help of CSAS, the exhibits were easily and quickly produced for court the next day.

In total 10 suspects were charged, eight pleading guilty before trial, two went to trial with one being found guilty and one not guilty. Those found guilty were sentenced to between eight months and five years each.

Hannah Ainley, Customer Account Manager, Forensic Analytics and former Intelligence Analyst with West Yorkshire Police.