A man who swindled the Royal Mail out of £70 million was sentenced to prison on Thursday (February 8).

Narinder Sandhu, 62, of Jordans, Buckinghamshire, had cheated the company for a decade, using the proceeds to fund a high life that included a mansion and multiple luxury cars.

Sandhu, as owner and director of Pack Post International LTD (PPIL), ran his scam from 2005, with brother Parmjeet Sandhu, 56, and James Mooney, 44, brought into the operations between 2008 and 2017.

The mail was sent through logistics companies in Berkshire and Buckinghamshire from 2008 to 2017

Evidence revealed 433 manipulated spreadsheets that showed PPIL paid £1.7 million for postal services when it should have submitted at least £6 million.

Parjeet Sandhu declared an income to HMRC of £495,000 per annum in the tax year 2014/2015.

However, as of December 2020, he owned property worth about £2.6 million, and equity of around £1.3 million.

Despite his collaboration, the court heard that Sandhu was the 'architect' of the fraud.

Prosecutor Ellis Sareen explained how thousands of items were under-declared by adjusting docket spreadsheets until when Royal Mail investigators spotted the discrepancies.

Mr Sareen noted: "In this case, we will be talking about literal tonnes of mail – thousands of thousands of items."

Prosecuting Mr Sareen claimed Parmjeet was integral to the fraud but wasn't rewarded as generously as his brother.

Mr Sareen said: "His [Parmjeet's] rewards were commensurate with the importance of his work.

"He did not do as well as Narinder Sandhu out of this fraud."

The Judge, Philip Bartle KC, who handed down the sentence pointed out the defendants had taken advantage of Royal Mail's self-declaration system for its large customers.

Judge Bartle said: "These three defendants took advantage of this weakness to persistently under-declare mail for almost a decade.

"I accept on the case of each of these defendants, they are genuinely remorseful.

"I have no doubt they are genuinely remorseful and that is shown in their willingness to make not only compensation but, very, very, substantial compensation."

Narinder Sandhu received a four-year sentence, of which only half will be served before he is released on licence.

His brother Parmjeet Sandhu and accomplice James Mooney, were both handed suspended sentences.

Parmjeet Sandhu was given 24 months in jail suspended for two years, and Mooney was handed a 21-month suspension sentence over two years.

Furthermore, Parmjeet must complete 150 hours of unpaid work.