Muhammed Ilyas of Slough faces sentence for role in £100 million Heathrow money-laundering scheme

LONDON:Muhammed Ilyas from Slough is awaiting sentence for his part in a gang that smuggled more than £100 million in dirty cash out of the UK from Heathrow Airport to Dubai in the biggest money-laundering case of its kind. It comes after ringleader Abdulla Alfalasi, 47, was jailed for more than nine years.

Emirati national Alfalasi, 47, recruited dozens of couriers to fly suitcases stuffed with bank notes out of the country on business class flights between April 2019 and November 2020. The mules were paid between £3,000 and £8,000 a time, plus expenses, for a total of 83 trips as part of a money-laundering service for dozens of drugs gangs around the UK.

Carrying up to £500,000 in each suitcase – packed with coffee grounds or air fresheners in a bid to fool sniffer dogs – they would use Alfalasi’s firm Omnivest Gold Trading to cover the cash declarations on arrival in Dubai.

Muhammed Geyas Ilyas, 29, from Slough, who took a total of £2.5 million in two trips, was arrested off a flight back to Heathrow in February 2020 after Border Force officers found a bag that had gone missing at the airport containing £431,000 in cash.

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