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By David Brown
March 5, 2009
A fake British aristocrat was convicted yesterday of playing a leading
role in an audacious attempt to carry out the world=E2=80=99s biggest bank raid.
The gang of international criminals came close to stealing =C2=A3229 million
from a City bank by exploiting the high-tech security measures designed
to protect money transfers. But the plot failed when a hacker into the
system missed one set of numbers from an electronic form.
Hugh Rodley =E2=80=94 who insisted on being addressed as =E2=80=9CLord=E2=80=9D despite having
bought his manorial title =E2=80=94 was the front man for the group, setting up
companies and bank accounts to receive and launder the money.
Details of the =E2=80=9Cbold and sophisticated=E2=80=9D attack were untangled by the
Serious Organised Crime Agency during a four-year investigation.
Kevin O=E2=80=99Donoghue, the head of security at Sumitomo Mitsui Banking
Corporation, claimed that in 2004 he was forced to let two Belgian
computer hackers into the Japanese bank=E2=80=99s City headquarters after
threats to his family. Gilles Poelvoorde and Jan Van Osselaer installed
spy software on executives=E2=80=99 computers that recorded their log-ins and
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