When you get hundreds of thousands of people who not only care nothing for your culture, laws, customs and values moving in to your cities every year, it should come as no surprise that the sum total creative energy and impulse of some of them will go towards destroying the system for short term gain for themselves.
H/T UK Pete
Last updated at 12:48 AM on 24th December 2011
Mohammed Asif Ashraf blackmailed at least 50 motorists, demanding £150 to release vehicles, often late at night
A bogus car clamper who acted like a ‘modern day pirate’ by demanding cash for towed away cars has been jailed.
Mohammed Ashraf ran an unlicensed firm called ‘Clamp You!’ that brought misery to scores of drivers.
His staff would hide around street corners in a liveried van waiting for cars to clamp.
They would then tow them away before demanding up to £600 a time to release them.
Yesterday Ashraf, 31, was jailed for five and a half years for blackmail.
One doctor whose vehicle was unlawfully towed while he was at a New Year’s Eve party in Manchester agreed to sign his car over to Ashraf rather than pay to get it back because the car was worth less than the release fee.
Another man was clamped after he parked in a backstreet to pick up his wife – without even getting out of his car.
Police alerted by Ashraf’s tactics discovered he duped his victims by using a fake ID badge created from photocopy paper stuck to a bank card.
It also emerged he had set up an illegal service, ‘RemoveAllPoints.Com’, which claimed it would help motorists avoid driving penalties – only for Ashraf to pass tickets on to an innocent driver who was then forced to travel to courts across Britain to prove his innocence.
At Manchester Crown Court, Ashraf, of Blackley, was found guilty of five charges of blackmail, two offences of possessing articles for use in fraud, three counts of perverting the course of justice and an offence under the Private Security Industry Act 2001.
Yesterday one of his victims, Mohammed Ali, 50, a taxi driver who was clamped and charged £150 despite legally parking outside a shop, said:
‘He’s harming people and he’s dangerous. The way he speaks and acts, he’s in his own little world. He doesn’t respect anyone apart from himself.’
The court heard Ashraf had enrolled on a course with the Security Industry Authority which regulates clampers but was not given a licence.
He set up Clamp You! in 2009 which went on to become Unauthorised Parking Solutions Ltd. Anyone who was clamped was given a telephone number to call.
Ashraf would answer and demand that the victim hand over a fee before the clamp was released.
Drivers were told that unless they paid £150 their car would be towed and they would face further costs of up to £400, not including storage fees.
One victim, Dr Stephen Cain, had parked his car on New Year’s Eve 2009, and returned the following day to find it had been towed away.
He contacted a number on a nearby sign but was told it would cost £600 to recover the car.
Dr Cain agreed to sign over the car to Ashraf rather than pay and the clamper reportedly sold it for £450.
Another driver, Oksana Sabadisa, told the court she was clamped in the car park of the finance company where she worked. She took a picture of Ashraf’s badge and number-plate so she could check it was legitimate.
Ashraf also duped drivers into believing his service RemoveAll Points.Com was a legitimate way for them to remove penalties from their licences.
But instead Ashraf falsely nominated an innocent man to take all the points and he was inundated with notices for offences from all over the country.
Amar Majeed – a former customer of a car hire firm Ashraf ran – was wrongly named as the man at the wheel of vehicles which jumped red lights and veered into bus lanes.
Mr Majeed was forced to go to courts across the country, at one point travelling from his home in Glasgow to Kent, to prove his innocence.
Passing sentence, Judge Michael Henshell said: ‘The facts of this case have demonstrated there is an urgent need for police to scrutinise the activities of car clamping operations.
‘In this case the defendant wasn’t properly authorised and the ID badge shown was utterly bogus.
‘The operation of his businesses was a form of piracy committed on the streets of this city in which cars were held hostage and backed up with the threat of being towed away.’