SILVER-tongued Feezan “Fizzy” Choudhary was dubbed The Voice by police after scamming 750 businesses out of £113million.
The 25-year-old used Scottish, Welsh or posh English accents to pose as an official from a bank’s fraud department to persuade employees to give him vital security details over the phone.
Huge amounts would then be transferred from accounts, often in seconds. An army of around 1,000 mules laundered it within hours in amounts small enough not to raise suspicions.
It was the UK’s biggest ever cyber fraud.
At the height of the scam it raked in up to £2million a week.
Choudhary pocketed around half, building up a £50milllion fortune which he used to buy flash cars and Rolex watches and party with pop stars.
He was eventually brought to justice in a £500,000 probe involving 100 officers from 16 forces.
Some of the cash was recovered but around £66million is still missing, believed to have been moved to Dubai and Pakistan.
Met Police Det Chief Insp Andrew Gould, who led the investigation, said: “It is the biggest fraud of this kind we have seen in the country.
“I have done terrorism command investigations in the UK before, and the level of tradecraft they used throughout their criminality was as high if not higher than most terrorist networks I have investigated.
“They were working from 10am to 5pm five days a week, smashing victims all day every day."
Judge Peter Testar praised police, saying: “The work these officers did was heroic and had heroic proportions.”
Choudhary had homes in Glasgow and Pakistan.
He carried such huge wads of cash that staff at Harrods in London were said to believe he was an international celebrity.
He would sometimes send a crony to shop for him, using FaceTime to check purchases, including a £9,000 jacket, and ran up a £95,895 tab on a store loyalty card.
He got engaged to Ayisha Nadeem, 25 in a lavish Lahore ceremony and was filmed slipping a diamond ring on her finger.
He was so obsessive about his motors he flew polishers 8,000 miles to the city from Scotland to buff up his fleet of Porsche Cayennes.
Yet back home firms were left counting the cost, with some left bankrupt and one firm of solicitors alone stung for £2.2million.
Police said an employee who fell for the scam committed suicide after learning its extent.
Prosecutor Michael Shorrock QC told London’s Southwark crown court: “Literally within a blink of an eye this money was being moved from one account to another.”
Police said they were amazed by Choudhary’s patter, which he would keep up in calls lasting up to 70 minutes.
Detective Con Richard Strike, of West Yorkshire Police, said: “He got better and better, and more and more confident.
“He’s got a very Scottish accent, but for the calls he put on a very soothing, professional English accent. He’s a very good career criminal, but the way he preys on his victims is horrendous.
“It’s all down to pure greed. All the time he was just thinking about the money, not about the lives he was affecting and, in some cases, ruining."
Choudhary went on the run when he realised the game was up and tried to fly to Pakistan from Paris in November.
It was the day of the IS terror outrages in the city, and he was nicked using a fake passport minutes after the first attack.
Earlier this year his Bentley was firebombed outside his home in Pollokshields, Glasgow, after he was accused of having an affair with another criminal’s wife.
Choudhary admitted conspiracy to defraud and conspiracy to launder money and was jailed for 11 years.
Fiancee Nadeem admitted money laundering at an earlier hearing and was jailed for 20 weeks in May.
Choudhary’s brother Nouman, 22 — who acted as the gang’s accountant, investing money in properties in Scotland and Pakistan — was yesterday given 3½ years after admitting conspiracy to launder money.
In total another four accomplices were given suspended sentences while six others were jailed for between 21 months and five years for various fraud charges.
“Middle man” Mohammed Azhar, 38, of Slough, was given 32 months after helping police but must now live with his family in a witness protection programme.
Including earlier hearings, 16 defendants have now been sentenced.
An asset confiscation hearing is set for May.
CHOUDHARY put on a posh English accent and claimed he was from NatWest’s corporate division to take £250,000 from a property firm.
Owner Des Dillon, 67, was left facing bankruptcy after revealing his bank details during a 15-minute phone call.
The businessman, who runs the firm from Dublin, said: “I feel a total idiot but I was let down by the bank’s systems.
“The attitude at NatWest was just, ‘tough luck. You were the one that was conned’.”
He said the caller was “charming and plausible”.
He said: “He told me someone in Aberdeen had got access to a card reader and was attempting to use it to get into my account. I believed it because I’d ordered a new card reader and assumed it had been misappropriated.
“He was giving the impression it was a race against time to lock this person out. He was just so friendly, so talented, saying things like ‘I’m here to protect your interests’.
“I know the guy who conned me is a b****** who managed to enjoy a fabulous lifestyle at my expense, but NatWest completely blamed me.
“There wasn’t a shred of sympathy and they wouldn’t even give us a loan to tide us over.”
Mr Dillon got some money back but lost about £115,000.