UK: The president of a Polish air handling unit manufacturer has been jailed after pleading guilty to robbery, blackmail and false imprisonment.
Sebastian Mysliwiec, 40, and his partner, Monika Piatkowska, 33, both Polish nationals, were said to have fallen out with their business associates and threatened them at gunpoint.
Sebastian Mysliwiec was head of Dospel, a Polish company producing a range of ventilation products, including industrial fans and air handling units in the city of Częstochowa in south Poland, just north of Katowice.
Monika Piatkowska was head of Luftsturme Ltd, a company registered in the UK with a factory unit at Uplands Business Park in Walthamstow. Sebastian Mysliwiec was listed as the company secretary.
In early April 2014, Mysliwiec, together with two colleagues, is said to have travelled to the UK to meet with his UK-based accountant in Edmonton. Mysliwiec wanted his accountant to submit false VAT invoices in support of his business activities; however his accountant refused to do this.
On 8 April 2014 Mysliwiec attended the accountant’s office at Edmonton once again, this time with four other men, some of whom were carrying firearms. Mysliwiec threatened the accountant and told him that unless he agreed to cooperate with the provision of false VAT invoices he would be answerable for the loss that Mysliwiec would incur, which was believed to amount to £300,000 per month. When the victim refused, Mysliwiec ordered his men to threaten the victim and another employee at gunpoint.
On the orders of Mysliwiec, a further employee was called to the accountant’s office. He was tied up and assaulted by Mysliwiec with tools purchased that day from a builders’ warehouse in Walthamstow. £10,000 in cash was also stolen, along with several iPhones, an iPad, car keys and a Polish ID card.
The victims reported the incident to police and when Mysliwiec next returned to the UK he was arrested for robbery at Luton Airport.
His partner Monika Piatkowska subsequently flew to the UK to be by Mysliwiec’s side. Over the course of the next few weeks, Piatkowska arranged for a private detective to trace the families of the three robbery victims. The families of the victims all lived in Poland.
One victim from the robbery was subsequently approached by the private detective and Piatkowska. Alerted to the fact that they knew where his family lived in Poland, and frightened of what might happen should he refuse, the victim agreed to provide a statement to a solicitor, in which he withdrew the allegations against Mysliwiec.
Nevertheless he informed police of what had happened and Flying Squad detectives arrested Piatkowska at a meeting between her and that victim, moments after she had handed him several thousand pounds in sterling and Polish zloty, as payment for his part in the attempt to bring an end to the prosecution of Mysliwiec.
Sebastian Mysliwiec pleaded guilty to robbery, blackmail and false imprisonment and was sentenced to six years, three months in prison. Monika Piatkowska was found guilty of conspiracy of perverting the course of justice. She was sentenced to two years, six months imprisonment.