UK Man Creates Fake Website to Initiate Jail Release
Neil Moore, who was held at the UK’s Wandsworth Prison for defrauding large organizations in excess of £1.8 million, recently made use of his voice impersonation skills yet again. While imprisoned, he managed to create a fake website and e-mail account using an illicit mobile phone number.
His case was on remand, meaning under review, at the time, making this a most foolish move, since the chance of his case being overturned existed at the time, but now he faces new charges of which he will most certainly be found guilty.
Moore reportedly created a website very similar to the official court website, and then sent an e-mail to prison officials with instructions for his release. Unbelievably, the scheme worked, and the deception was not uncovered until three days later, when investigators in his on-remand case of fraud went to interview him. The 28-year-old East Londoner then turned himself in three days later.
The UK court heard prosecutors testify:
A lot of criminal ingenuity harbours in the mind of Mr Moore. The case is one of extraordinary criminal inventiveness, deviousness and creativity, all apparently the developed expertise of this defendant.
The judge reacted by calling Neil Moore’s creative criminality “ingenious.”
In addition to the fraud charges, wherein prosecutors say that Moore used four different aliases pretending to be from Barclays Bank, Lloyds Bank, and others in order to defraud large organizations of great sums of money, Moore now faces a count of “escape from lawful custody.” He has pleaded guilty to all charges and final sentencing will commence on April 20th.
Ingenious indeed, and likely not to be repeated by others in the future. Prison officials will likely be cracking down on contraband in UK prisons, to include mobile phones. In other prison systems, it is possible to deny prisoners any contact with the outside world for very arbitrary reasons, so it can be assumed the UK prison system may do the same.
What hasn’t been discussed is what punishment, if any, of the officials who released Moore face. After all, their gullibility was a pre-requisite to the success of his scam. A quick check of the details of the release instructions could have revealed the scam.
British Steven Jay Russell?
This incident is reminiscent of the 1990s antics of Texan Steven Jay Russell, who repeatedly managed to escape jail as well as get his longtime boyfriend Phillip Morris released by pretending to be a judge.
Russell was the subject of the 2009 film I Love You Phillip Morris starring Jim Carrey. The film gets some of the details wrong, such as how Russell faked AIDS, when he actually faked a heart attack in order to get to a hospital, where he then impersonated officials who told the hospital it was okay to release him.
Russell was eventually, finally arrested in 1998 in Florida by US Marshalls and later sentenced to 144 years in prison. To this day, he is on 23-hour-a-day maximum security lock down to prevent his escaping again.