Student is caught spending a share of £9k of ill-gotten gains from a scam

Money.
Money.

A student is due to be sentenced after she admitted spending a share of £9,000 which she had received from the proceeds of a fraud offence.

Jessica Sibusisiwe Masuku, 23, formerly of High Peak Hall students’ residence, on Bridge Street, Buxton, received the money into her bank account and used the cash to buy car parts at a dealership, according to a Chesterfield magistrates’ court hearing.

Chesterfield magistrates' court.

Chesterfield magistrates' court.

Prosecuting solicitor Ann Barrrett told the hearing on December 5 the fraud involved duping a bowling club in Scotland which wanted a new roof and a bank transfer was required and an invoice was sent asking for £9,000 but a second invoice was sent with new alternate details but this was fraudulent.

Ms Barrett said: “There is no evidence Masuku was involved in the original fraud other than the fact the money ended up in her account and part of the money was spent by her.

“She was one of two people who went into a car dealership and bought car parts using these funds and investigations were underway to trace the money.”

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Derby University student Masuku, of Mill Green Close, Swarcliffe, Leeds, pleaded guilty to acquiring, using or possessing £9,000 of criminal property at Buxton between May 4 and May 5, 2017.

Defence solicitor Kevin Walker said: “There was no indication Masuku was involved in the original fraud. She’s pleaded guilty because she suspected something was going on and in essence she’s been taken advantage of.

“A person involved in fraud does not use their own bank account to receive the money because people can trace bank details.”

He added that Masuku is a young single mother who is at university and someone put the money into her account with coercion and a male was present with her when the Audi parts were purchased with these funds.

Mr Walker said the defendant has had a limited understanding and did not fully realise what was going on.

Magistrates committed the case to Derby Crown Court for sentencing on January 3, 2019.

A Proceeds of Crime Act confiscation order is also expected to be considered to recover the money owed to Dean’ Bowling Club, in Scotland.