TWO men who made a false passport application to allow one to travel to Turkey have been jailed.
Ali Hafijee, 27, wanted to carry out humanitarian work with refugees fleeing war zones when he travelled to Turkey in 2013, but was turned away at the airport in Istanbul, a court heard.
In a bid to return to the country, Hafijee, of Thorn Hill Close, Blackburn, approached student Ajmil Adurker, 26, and offered him £1,000 for help in making a false application to HM Passport offices.
Adurker’s GP was asked to countersign the photographs and in November 2013, Hafijee’s picture was attached to an application in Adurker’s name.
MORE TOP STORIES:
However officials at the HM Passport Offices in Liverpool became suspicious and asked Adurker to attend for a face-to-face interview.
When he failed to attend the police were alerted and both men were arrested.
Hafijee, who speaks four languages and has carried out work in disaster zones in the UK and overseas, exercised his right to silence.
However Adurker, of Mulberry Walk, Blackburn, told officers he had agreed to take part in the scam as he was a student and desperate for money.
Both men pleaded guilty to fraud by false representation and appeared at Preston Crown Court to be sentenced.
Judge Philip Sycamore said: “You Hafijee had been turned away when you attempted to enter Turkey.
“You wanted to visit Turkey again and you conspired with your co-defendant to obtain a fraudulent passport in the name of Ajmil Adurker.
“That was to enable you to travel to Turkey.
“It is said you wish to be there in respect of humanitarian times.
“I make it clear that in sentencing you I do not make any assumptions about your intentions, not that there were any terrorist links.
“Any offences involving the use or attempts to obtain false passports are very serious offences and good character and personal circumstances have very limited value in sentencing.
“Sentencing must not only punish but also must deter others who may be tempted to carry out a fraud of this nature, which can have serious consequences enabling people to travel in breach of travel prohibitions.
“In cases of this nature immediate custody will almost always be the outcome.”