A MAN who assisted criminals to launder proceeds of crime has avoided a prison sentence for breaching the resulting sentence.

Andrew Wilson was “used” to assist in the transfer of £170,000 proceeds of a revenue scam, recruiting others to help filter the criminally-made money through online bank accounts set up in their names.

Durham Crown Court heard the money was quickly removed from the accounts by the scammers.

Although Wilson was said to be, “far removed from the origins of the fraud”, the court was told there was an inference he became involved due to a previous drug debt.

The now 36-year-old defendant, of Chatton Street, Chester-le-Street, received a 16-month prison sentence, suspended for two years, in January last year.

He was also ordered to undergo 30 probation rehabilitation sessions and comply with a six-month 6pm to 6am home curfew.

Read more: Trio before court were said to be far from source of scam

But he was back before the court in November for breaching the suspended sentence order.

He was said to have failed to attend three of the probation sessions, as well as having breached the electronically-monitored curfew.

Although he contested the curfew breach, Wilson admitted missing the probation appointments.

Judge Ray Singh deferred sentencing him for three months, warning him he risked having the prison sentence activated if he failed to now comply with the order.

On his return to court yesterday (Monday February14), Judge Singh said it appears Wilson has, “done everything asked of him.”

He told him: “Nine out of ten fail to do that. But, it’s a pleasure to see you have complied with my request and got your life back on track."

Adding 20 further rehabilitation sessions in punishment for the breach, the judge added: “Don’t now slip off the rails and fail with this order.”

Wilson responded that he would not fail to comply.

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