A raid undertaken to investigate a man operating an illegal business selling Sony PSP (PlayStationPortable) SD memory cards and chipping offences resulted in the discovery of over GBP 12,000 in cash stuffed into a single original Microsoft Xbox console and three PlayStation 2 consoles.
Following the raid at a man’s house in Tower Hamlets on Monday 14th January the incredible discovery only came about when the consoles, seized by Tower Hamlets Trading Standards investigators and officers from the Metropolitan Police, were handed over to ELSPA (the Entertainment & Leisure Software Publishers Association) IP Crime Unit investigators.
Following standard protocol, the ELSPA investigators began removing the casing of each of the four consoles with the intention of checking for evidence of circumvention devices (chips) and tampered hard drives when they discovered several plastic bank bags – each containing thousands of pounds sterling in note form.
The Xbox contained a staggering GBP 5,925 where the hard drive should have been and the three PlayStation2s each volunteered GBP 2,835 GBP 2,025, and GBP 1,425 respectively, making a grand, wallet-bulging total of GBP 12,210 recovered.
Cash discovery aside, the man had been selling PSP games on SD memory cards (he was caught in possession of an estimated 75) and providing an Xbox and PlayStation 2 chipping service. Consequently, a POCA (Proceeds Of Crime Act) investigation has already started to estimate the criminal gain from his illegal activities.
Michael Rawlinson, managing director of ELSPA, commented: I’ve heard it all now. It never ceases to amaze ELSPA and its investigators the lengths criminals go to make money – and always to the detriment of honest, hard working businesses. I congratulate Tower Hamlets Trading Standards on bringing to an end this illegal business operation.