Leicester man guilty of multi-million pound money laundering operation

A man who ran a multi-million pound money laundering operation from his business in the Belgrave area of the city has been found guilty.

Chauhan Vijay Yogendrasinh, 55, was the director of Rushi Investments Limited, which appeared to be a legitimate money transferring service.

However, the company was actually a money laundering operation, transferring huge amounts of criminal money overseas.

More than £11 million had gone through the business which was based on Canon Street in Leicester.

Although some of the money was transferred legally, millions of pounds was moved illegally through different bank accounts and companies, and sent abroad.

The team working on the case said they still do not know where this criminal money came from, however huge amounts of cash and numerous false documents were found, proving that money laundering had been committed.

Yogendrasinh had denied any involvement in the operation, but following a seven-week trial at court, he was found guilty of conspiracy to transfer criminal property.

He has been remanded into custody and is due to be sentenced on Friday.

The investigation found Rushi Investments also used legitimate money service bureaus, misleading the companies so that they would transfer the money abroad.

This was done through false lists of people which were created to try and explain where the large amounts of money being deposited had come from.

Yogendrasinh and the company were put under surveillance, and officers found that its claim that dozens of people visited the business daily to deposit money were false.

It was also found ‘cuckoo smurfing’ had been committed. This is when a person unwittingly allows their bank account to be used to deposit money.

The victims of this were expecting a large cash payment into their bank accounts, but the money had come from Rushi Investments Ltd using criminal funds. The bank accounts were being used to try and disguise the origin and destination of the cash.

Detective Constable Grant Bailey said: “This was an operation which involved millions of pounds of criminal cash being transferred illegally.”

“A complex police investigation which involved tireless hours of examining documents, checking financial records and carrying out CCTV enquiries – amongst other work – meant that we were able to prove what ‘business’ was actually being run by Rushi Investments.”

“We will now carry out confiscation proceedings with a view to taking back the ill-gotten gains obtained through this criminal conduct.”

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