Maserati-driving Cambridge don caught with £100,000 cash in Thornton’s chocolate box at Heathrow after making more than £2m from green energy swindle pays back £1m
A Cambridge don who made a fortune from a green-energy swindle has paid more than £1million back to the government.
Ehsan Abdi-Jalebi, 42, was caught with £100,000 in cash in a Thornton’s Continental chocolate box as he boarded a flight to Tehran from Heathrow airport in 2015.
He had been developing a property in Iran worth £900,000 while roaring around in his Maserati.
Abdi-Jalebi won international acclaim for his work on wind turbines and set up his technology firm in 2006.
He dishonestly received project funding to the value of £2.5million in grant money from Innovate UK and The Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC), because they would not have paid out the grant money had they known that invoices were being forged.
The National Crime Agency announced today the don has since sold assets and transferred £988,411 to the UK exchequer, along with £60,000 from the proceeds of a house sale in Trumpington, Cambridgeshire.
Ehsan Abdi-Jalebi, 42, has paid more than £1million back to the government after a long running investigation by the National Crime Agency
Judge Martin Beddoe dismissed Adbi-Jalebi’s (pictured) claims that the money was used to build the machine in Iran as ‘simply fiction’ following a confiscation hearing in 2021
Wind Technologies Ltd was entitled to grants for part of the costs incurred but not for the total amount.
Abdi-Jalebi altered the invoices, increasing Wind Technologies costs to make up for the costs that were not covered by the partial grants.
The company would therefore receive de facto 100 per cent grants instead of partial grants.
Abdi-Jalebi had admitted altering the invoices but claimed the money had been spent on a secret cutting-edge 1.5 Megawatt wind turbine in Iran.
But after he failed to produce any evidence of the mysterious project which he claimed had since been destroyed, he was jailed for four years at Southwark Crown Court in 2018.
Judge Martin Beddoe dismissed Adbi-Jalebi’s claims that the money was used to build the machine in Iran as ‘simply fiction’ following a confiscation hearing in 2021.
The judge had found that Abdi-Jalebi had profited by more than £2million and ordered him to pay back £1.334.929 or serve another eight and a half years in jail.
Following his arrest, Abdi-Jalebi lost his fellowship at Churchill College in Cambridge as the NCA spent 18 months examining his financial history.
Abdi-Jalebi, of Trumpington, Cambridge, admitted 13 counts of forgery and was jailed for four years in December 2018
Abdi-Jalebi was caught with £100,000 in cash in a Thornton’s Continental chocolate box
His company, Wind Technologies, received more than £1.3million in renewable energy grants from the Government and the European Union, while three linked firms were handed a further £1.5million.
Abdi-Jalebi, of Trumpington, Cambridge, admitted 13 counts of forgery and was jailed for four years in December 2018.
Rob Burgess, Head of Asset Denial at the NCA, commented: ‘This is a hugely significant result and demonstrates the agency’s ability to recover criminal assets even under challenging circumstances, such as where they are held abroad.
‘We have demonstrated our drive and ability to pursue continuous enforcement activity against those subject to Confiscation Orders to ensure they do not retain the proceeds of their crime.’
Cynthia Caiquo, CPS Proceeds of Crime Legal Manager, said: ‘Jalebi stole government money, which was intended to provide green energy and help improve the environment.
‘Through our work with international jurisdictions we were able to secure the repatriation of £1m, which has now been returned to fund future projects.’
Source: Read Full Article