Cambridgeshire victim, 81, loses £300,000 in Spanish ‘lottery’ scam as police go to court to stop his losses growing even bigger
PUBLISHED: 11:15 10 March 2014 | UPDATED: 16:30 10 March 2014
A man who tricked an 81-year-old Cambridgeshire man out of thousands of pounds through a fake lottery scam has been jailed.
Chris Chidi Dinneya was involved in the fraud which saw the victim pay huge amounts of money into various overseas accounts after being notified he had won the Spanish Lottery.
The victim, who lost around £300,000 in the scam, was so taken in that he continued to try to send more cash to the scammers even after the police investigation began.
The police and Cambridgeshire County Council had to apply for a court order to take control of the victim’s accounts to prevent any further losses.
Dinneya 40, of Brocklehurst Street, London, was traced to a number of the payments and arrested in London in November 2012.
He denied acquiring more than £6,100 from the Cambridgeshire victim and a second charge involving a total of £179,725 from a number of victims across the world.
He was convicted on both counts of money laundering following a trial at Cambridge Crown Court and jailed for a total of three-and-a-half years.
Detective Constable Sharon Garrett, from the force Economic Crime Unit, said: “This is a very sad case involving many people who have effectively been scammed out of their life savings.
“The Cambridge victim was so convinced that he was set to receive a large payout if he kept sending the money transfers, that we had to take action to protect him.
“This should serve as a warning to others who are contacted by people claiming they have won prizes in return for money transfers or bank details.
“Remember, if something sounds too good to be true, it often is.”
Anyone who thinks they have received a scam phone call, letter or email should call Action Fraud on 0300 1232040.