Husband and wife who exploited factory workers have been jailed

|News, Fraud and economic crime

A husband and wife who pretended to help people find work in factories in order to exploit them, have been sentenced.

The authorities were alerted to Alexander Goran’s scheme when a charity was approached by a Romanian victim who said Goran had been exploiting him and other Romanian workers.

Goran, 30, would ‘recruit’ people looking for a job and arrange factory work for them, but controlled their wages, where they lived and where, when and what hours they could work.

Instead of receiving wages into their own accounts, Goran arranged for the money to be paid into his wife’s account.

Before paying the workers, Goran deducted money for transport, arranging the work and accommodation, which left the workers with very little.

After they were charged for their illicit activity, Alexander and Ana Marie, 34, fled to Spain. The Crown Prosecution Service successfully secured their return after applying for European Arrest Warrants.

Pamela Jain of the CPS said: “This was a corrupt operation where Goran took advantage of desperate people looking for work and took their hard-earned money. He dictated where they would live and when and where they would work, taking money from their salaries.

“He and his wife presented themselves as two people who were there to help but instead they used their position to exploit them.”

Building the case

Items uncovered by the multi-agency operation between the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority and Merseyside Police at Goran’s property proved he was the driving force behind the conspiracy.

Goran had a ledger full of the personal details of people he’d found work for, as well as a number of bank cards in the names of these employees.

Witnesses confirmed that Goran had been the person who had sourced work for them and had managed their wages.

Goran had also sent a number of messages which revealed a sustained abuse of the workers’ position in order to exploit the employees for financial gain.

Despite having no legal licence to supply workers into this factory work, Ana Marie Goran helped workers to fill in forms under the guise of assisting them.

Both Ana Marie Goran and Alexander Goran pleaded guilty to acting as an unlicensed gangmaster and aiding and abetting an unlicensed gangmaster at an earlier hearing. Alexander Goran has also pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit fraud by abuse of position.

Yesterday (Tuesday 3 December) at Liverpool Crown Court Ana Marie Goran was sentenced to 15 months in prison and Alexander Goran was sentenced to three-and-a-half years in prison.

Notes to editors

  • Pamela Jain is a Specialist Prosecutor in the Specialist Fraud Division at the CPS
  • On 11 June 2019 co-defendants Christopher Beech and Joshua Beesley pleaded guilty to a charge of aiding and abetting an unlicensed gangmaster and in respect of Beesley, an additional charge of conspiracy to commit fraud by abuse of position. Beech received a custodial sentence of 8 months suspended for 18 months whilst Beesley received a 20-month custodial sentence.

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