A man who set up an un-registered Money Service Business and traded in designer clothes to launder more than £800,000 has been sentenced.

Shunjian Jiang, 28, of Colindeep Gardens, Colindale, bought high-end fashion items to order before sending them to China. His customers paid in yuan – the Chinese currency.

He used this money to act as an illegal Money Service Business, advertising on online forums offering to exchange sterling to yuan for Chinese ex-pats in the UK.

Jiang carried out the currency exchanges using several UK bank accounts. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) investigators found significant numbers of cash deposits and transactions on his bank records.

His previous flat on the Isle of Dogs, East London, was searched when he was arrested in August 2016.

Around £50,000 worth of designer clothes ready for export to China were found and seized by officers. Southwark Crown Court heard that Jiang spent £465,000 on clothing.

Jiang pleaded guilty at Southwark Crown Court to operating an un-registered Money Service Business on Friday (July 12). He was sentenced to eight months in prison, suspended for 18 months at the same court and will have to do 160 hours of unpaid community work.

On sentencing, His Honour Judge Pegden said: “You acted as a money exchanger plainly in a business capacity. Very large sums of money came from China to the UK.

“Sterling, by hundreds of transactions, went into various accounts enabling you to purchase a property in north London.

“The money you exchanged became criminal property because the business was not registered and I sentence you solely on that basis.”

HMRC has started confiscation proceedings to recover the full amount of the funds illegally exchanged by Jiang.

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