14/06/2006 - BBC News (UK)
The policeman who gave in to temptation
It is an ignominious end to the high-flying career of Detective Sergeant William McKelvie, who has been jailed for two years for his part in the plot to use the forged bond.
His friend and former colleague Robert Miles has been sentenced to one year.
As a high-ranking officer within the National Criminal Intelligence Service (NCIS), McKelvie, 44, was used to spotting fakes and frauds.
It was this renowned expertise that Miles, 48, and the organised criminals he had met in Marbella, Spain, wanted to use.
Eventually it seems the sums involved proved too much of a temptation for McKelvie, who lived in Surrey's stockbroker belt.
For him it was a case of a gamekeeper-turned-poacher as he became increasingly involved with the gang of money launderers.
The pair helped the fraudsters, who attempted to raise funds with a forged draft, supposedly from the Ford Motor Company, between January 2003 and September 2004.
They were both police officers in Clapham, south London, in the 1980s before Miles left the force in 1989.
Approached in Marbella
It was while living in Marbella that Miles was approached by an English gang of money launderers and fraudsters to help them raise funds using the forged draft.
Miles in turn enlisted McKelvie, who was head of the West African Organised Crime Section of NCIS and described by the prosecution as an "extremely capable, experienced and highly thought-of officer".
He had trained as a specialist fraud investigator before joining NCIS, which gathers intelligence on organised criminals.
The document at the centre of the case was a bond for $500m (£275m) which purported to record an obligation on behalf of the Ford Motor Company to pay that sum.
They tried to use the document, either to obtain a line of credit, which could be used for trading on the markets, or even to try to sell it at less than its face value.
McKelvie, at the instigation of Miles, abused his position within NCIS to make unauthorised inquiries and disclosure of confidential information on behalf of the gang.
He made calls to track the process of the police probe into the case, and also generated a false intelligence report to keep investigators off the trail of Miles.
He was so highly thought of and trusted that no-one became suspicious when he requested the information from his worldwide contacts about an investigation into gang's activities.
This led to the fraudsters being tipped off about a police investigation into their activities.
Prosecutor Andrew Wheeler said McKelvie, who was due to retire in 2005, had "gravely betrayed" the British public.
Mr Wheeler said Miles's financial interest in the fake draft was "obvious'' as he was acting on behalf of the fraudsters and must have stood to gain financially from any successful financial exploitation of it.
The detective had been due for retirement within a few years and was "considering future sources of income'', the court heard.
Jurors cleared McKelvie of perverting the course of justice after he claimed he had made inquiries as a favour to his friend and not for financial reward.
But he was jailed for two years after being convicted of three charges of misconduct.
Despite all the evidence against him, McKelvie still protested his innocence: "It looks ghastly now... it must look like I was deliberately passing on confidential information but that is not the way it was."
Miles, of Towcester, Northamptonshire, was convicted of aiding and abetting misconduct in a public office and was jailed for 12 months.
He was acquitted on conspiracy to pervert the course of justice, perverting the course of justice and one further charge of aiding and abetting misconduct in a public office.
The offences took place between January 1, 2003, and September 16 2005.
Sentencing him, Judge Christopher Elwen said: "Your motivations, as I'm sure were demonstrated... were the prospect of financial gain. Yours were not simply the actions of an over-enthusiastic policeman prepared to go beyond the lengths of friendship."
The issuer of the fake draft, Robert Philip Moore Jnr, was jailed for 30 months in the US after pleading guilty to fraud offences.