One of Britain’s largest ever cash seizures was made after a crook was spotted struggling to carry around bags brimming with money.
More than £5 million was discovered when Met officers caught Ruslan Shamsutdinov red handed after watching an address at Porteus Apartments, Fulham, in June last year.
Detectives had the apartment where large scale launderer Sergejs Auzins was depositing huge amounts of cash under surveillance on Friday June 5 when Shamsutdinov was seen dragging the bags towards a parked car.
Police stopped the 36-year-old and upon searching his bags and apartment uncovered £5,082,026.17.
A further 39,000 Euros and £8,038.81 was found at Shamsutdinov's home in Hackney, east London.
On Sunday, July 14 Serwan Ahmadi was spotted handing a bag to another man who was arrested at the scene but the charges against him were dropped.
Later that day, 35-year-old Ahmadi was stopped and arrested on Victoria Road after leaving his home in Pycroft Way Edmonton, north London with another bag.
The bag contained £59,980 and a search of his address recovered £198,665.
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The next day 46-year-old Sergejs Auzins was arrested at his home in Windward Road, Rochester in Kent where £14,435.63 was seized.
The men were all jailed yesterday after pleading guilty to conspiracy to money laundering at Harrow Crown Court.
Shamsutdinov was jailed for three years and nine months, Auzins for three years and four months and Ahmad for one year and eight months, suspended for two years., plus 150 hours of unpaid work.
The arrests come as a result of a long-term operation aimed at tackling firearms offences and drug dealing across London.
Detective Superintendent Jason Prins, from the Specialist Crime Command, said: “As part of a long-running operation against gun crime and large scale Class A drugs supply across London, over five million pounds in criminal cash was seized from an address in Fulham.
“This is the largest ever single cash seizure by the Met and I believe one of the largest ever nationally.
“Organised crime is motivated by money and is one of the biggest causes of violence on our streets. Tackling this violence is our main priority.
“This seizure, and the conviction of these men for laundering that money, will have a major impact on the ability of a number of crime groups to carry on with their activities.”
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