Seven jailed following investigation into 'forgery factory'
Seven men have been jailed for a combined total of 16 years after the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) assisted an investigation into the production and supply of fake identity documents, including CSCS cards.
Steven Kanaventi, 39, Paul Kanaventi, 37, Victor Ayrio, 53, Alfred Adekoya, 47, Abul Azeeza, 57, Madalitso Majawa, 33, and Luke Nkanta, 29, were all found guilty of various fraud offences. Immigration officers investigating the gang unearthed the wide-scale distribution of fake British passports, residence permits and CSCS cards. The men were based in London, Coventry, Nottingham and Redditch.
Steven Kanaventi admitted to selling false documents for approximately 10 years and his gang partner, Paul Kanaventi, was working in the construction industry. Prices ranged from £200 for the CSCS card and degree certificates, to £900 for a passport. CITB supported the investigation by providing evidence that the CSCS cards produced were counterfeit documents, as well as supplying information on the gang members.
All seven were sentenced at Woolwich Crown Court on 26 January, receiving prison sentences of between six months and four years.
Commenting on the case, CITB Fraud Investigator Ian Sidney said: “People working illegally or without the necessary qualifications pose a huge risk to the construction industry and we are determined to stamp these practices out. Illegal working undermines legitimate employers, harms the reputation of the industry, drives down wages and denies employment opportunities to many others.
“The sentencing of the individuals involved in this criminal gang clearly show CITB is fully committed to fighting fraud in the construction industry. We will continue to work with the Home Office, law enforcement agencies and industry in bringing offenders to justice.”