Mobile phone scammers avoid prison

Two former call centre employees who involved themselves in a mobile phone scam avoided being sent to jail - but were warned further offending could result in jail time.

Tuesday, 12th November 2019, 4:13 pm
Laganside Courts, Belfast. Pic: Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker

Joseph Gibson (30) and 29-year old Ciaran Greene were both employed at Convergys - the call centre acting on behalf of Vodaphone - when the scam was unearthed by an account manager in 2017.

The pair received suspended sentences after appearing at Belfast Crown Court on fraud and converting criminal property charges yesterday.

Prosecutor Simon Jenkins revealed the accounts manager at Convergys informed police that both Gibson and Greene were using their login details to order a number of mobile phones to various addresses in Belfast in such a way that it would not create a bill.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

In July 2016, Greene - a father of four from Glen Road in Belfast - set up a fake account and from August 2016 to June 2017 around 30 new mobile phones were ordered through that account.

Saying the total loss to Convergys was around £17,000 Mr Jenkins said that between May and June 2017, both Greene and Gibson, from Tomb Street in Belfast, sold some of the phones using their own accounts in CEX.

Both men were arrested and admitted their guilt to police. Greene admitted setting up the fake account and said he asked Gibson to place orders and sent the phones out.

Judge Stephen Fowler told both men their actions amounted to a breach of trust and said there was “nothing particularly sophisticated” about their offending.

Noting both defendants were family men with a lack of a relevant criminal records who admitted their guilt, the judge handed them suspended sentences.