Brink's-Mat bullion launderers guilty

TWO MEN were convicted at the Old Bailey yesterday of laundering pounds 14m of the proceeds from the pounds 26m Brink's- Mat bullion robbery.

After six days of deliberation, the jury found Gordon Parry, 48, of Westerham, Kent, a property developer, guilty on 10 counts of handling stolen goods. Patrick Clark, 53, a former scrap- metal dealer and nightclub owner of Chingford, Essex, was found guilty of conspiring to handle stolen goods. Both had denied the charges.

The jury acquitted Clark's son, Stephen, 26, a restaurateur, of conspiring to handle stolen goods from the 1983 robbery. He was immediately released by Judge Henry Pownall.

Before the jury could return verdicts on the remaining two defendants, the seven-month trial was adjourned until Monday because a juror's son had been badly hurt in a cliff fall.

The judge said that the court would arrange for the woman to be flown to Cornwall by helicopter immediately, with the rest of the jury being returned to their secret hotel for a sixth and seventh night until Monday.

Jean Savage, 48, a tobacconist from West Kingsdown, and Brian Perry, 53, a mini-cab company owner from Biggin Hill, both in Kent, deny conspiring to launder the profits.

The jury was told of a 'torrent' of profits from a complex money-laundering operation set up after the robbery in November 1983. Armed robbers escaped from a security warehouse at Heathrow with 3.4 tons of gold bullion worth pounds 26m. It was Britain's second-biggest robbery, after the Knightsbridge safety deposit raid in 1987.

The Brink's-Mat gold was never seen again, the court was told. But 'a river of cash started to flow within months of the robbery which turned into a torrent', said Michael Austin-Smith, QC, for the prosecution. Parry and Patrick Clark were 'part of a scheme to launder the cash to make it safe to use', he said. The case centred on the transfer of the money through various offshore bank accounts, properties and companies, so it would be 'cleansed of any association with the Brink's-Mat gold'.

Parry was a 'wheeling dealing businessman' who dabbled in property in a small way, according to Mr Austin- Smith. With a solicitor, Michael Relton, jailed for his part in the laundering scheme in 1987, Parry was the front man for a series of property deals. Money was put into offshore accounts and then brought back to be invested in the UK, 'much in Docklands during the mid- Eighties boom'. Parry went on the run when police issued a warrant for his arrest. He was later arrested in Spain and returned to England for trial.

The prosecution alleged Patrick Clark banked pounds 3.2m into an account at the Bank of Ireland's branch in Finchley, north London, and more than pounds 1m in a branch account in Ilford, Essex. The money was part of the proceeds from the stolen gold.

(Photograph omitted)

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in