Massive £34m money laundering case collapses after legal arguments led by Zacharias Miah

14 October 2021

Specialist Fraud Division and HMRC 5 year operation into a £34M alleged international money laundering operation involving money service bureaus and foreign exchange services spectacularly collapsed yesterday at Snaresbrook Crown court. From the outset, lead counsel for the main defendant of four defendants,  Zacharias Miah argued there had been  "catastrophic disclosure failures" on the part of the crown forcing the prosecution to accept they had not prepared their case properly.

In what was almost a week of legal argument after 6 weeks of the trial process and following extensive cross-examination by Mr Miah, the prosecution conceded that the questioning of their witnesses had exposed significant evidential issues, disclosure failures across the investigation and information from the MSB software operating systems which meant the case had to stop. The crown’s request for a further 6 months to get their house in order was opposed by Mr Miah. A new trial could not take place before late 2022. 

The trial Judge accepted the submissions of Mr Miah and refused an adjournment.  The court emphasised the public interest in prosecuting cases efficiently and referred to the backlog of 3558 cases and in excess of 725 defendants in custody awaiting trial means further court time being taken up which prevents the most serious cases including numerous rape cases being tried and instead suffering further long delays.

Zacharias led Ahmed Muen and was instructed by Nadeem Majid of M and M Solicitors who along with his fraud team worked tirelessly to identify the grave prosecution failings in both the MSB operating systems and the astonishing culture of non compliance within financial systems operating. The team together worked effectively to achieve an outstanding result. 

Zacharias Miah is recognised for advising on serious financial crime matters and his international cross border fraud practice.

News report here