Belfast Telegraph

Diesel fraudster loses appeal over sentence

A man who opened false bank accounts used to launder hundreds of thousands of pounds has lost his appeal against being jailed for a year.

Senior judges rejected an argument that there was a disparity between the sentence imposed on Leonard Warwick and one of his co-accused.

Warwick (42) pleaded guilty to 17 charges of evading VAT, converting criminal property, obtaining services and money by deception and concealing the proceeds of crime.

He was sentenced last November at Belfast Crown Court along with a father and son for what was described as a “large scale” diesel and money laundering operation.

Warwick was given 12 months in prison after he agreed to spend a further year on probation.

But his lawyers challenged the sentence on the basis one of his co-accused, Anthony Michael Fox (40), of Orritor Road, Cookstown, received a suspended jail term.

Fox had pleaded guilty to evading the duty on diesel and concealing the proceeds of crime and criminal property.

Refusing Warwick’s application yesterday, the Court of Appeal held that the trial judge was entitled to take the view that his culpability was greater than Anthony Fox's because he was involved in opening the accounts.

Belfast Telegraph

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