Tag Archives: Mobile Phone Forensics

SYTECH Case Study – Digital Forensic Investigations in Cases Against Child Predators and Co-Conspirators

How Cellebrite’s UFED Link Analysis Strengthens Cases Against Child Predators and Co-Conspirators – Mobile Phone Forensic Examinations



Simon Lang, Senior Digital Forensic Consultant / Digital Forensics Manager, SYTECH – Digital FOrensics, Stoke-on-Trent, England



Use of Cellebrite UFED Link Analysis to attribute suspect handsets and assess and identify victims



Investigating rings of criminals who produce child exploitation materials



UFED Link Analysis saves time and effort associated with connecting suspects and victims on child exploitation, illegal money lending and drug conspiracy cases


Child exploitation can be one of the hardest crimes to prosecute. Victims are often too scared or ashamed to admit any connection to a suspect, and paedophiles go to great lengths to protect one another. To make their cases, police need ways to tie suspects and victims to one another via the frequency, type, and mode of their communications. Often this evidence is found on their mobile phones and GPS devices.


Simon Lang, Digital Forensics Manager at SYTECH – Systems Technology Consultants Ltd., England, has put UFED Link Analysis to work on several such cases in recent months. In the United Kingdom, law enforcement agencies frequently outsource digital forensics to ­rms like SYTECH. That’s because when a case goes to trial, the courts require an independent review of the work police did. High pro­le or complex cases with multiple devices often end up in court, so teams like Lang’s need tools that enable them to explain digital evidence simply and concisely at trial.


Lang himself has been a mobile device forensics examiner since about 2008, and he and his team have used Cellebrite systems since 2011. However, when faced with multiple mobile devices on a single case, they faced the time-consuming process of running data through spreadsheet software.


“Creating custom ­filters in Microsoft® Excel® and looking for common contacts, usernames and IDs, and incriminating content [such as text messages] can take a few hours when comparing the results from iPhones etc.,” says Lang.


That’s because of the sheer amount of data that iPhones and other smartphones can store. UFED Link Analysis provides an almost instantaneous graphical representation of the common contacts with the click of a button. “It is easier using these diagrams than looking at rows of text,” says Lang.


Why is this important? Lang and his team work on large cases involving multiple defendants across the United Kingdom, including child exploitation and drug conspiracy cases. “This tool comes in extremely handy in child exploitation and grooming cases, which are becoming more common in the UK,” Lang explains. “There are large ‘rings’ of individuals who have been targeting vulnerable people across the country.”


One of the most common ways his team uses UFED Link Analysis is for attribution of handsets, when the suspect denies ownership. Investigators can corroborate text messages or instant messaging, call logs, contacts and found on the suspect’s handset with like data found on victims’ or other suspects’ handsets.


Lang’s investigators also use UFED Link Analysis to compare “clean” and “dirty” phones. In these scenarios, suspects use one device for everyday noncriminal activities, and a second or more devices for their criminal activities. Common contacts and locations between the two can show which devices are used by the same suspect(s) and thus, can tie otherwise “innocent” suspects to the crimes they commissioned or committed.


The software is also handy for assessing multiple victims on these cases. The “Links-Mutual” view shows whether victims all had one or more suspects in common on their devices; patterns in keywords or timelines—days of the week or times of day—can help corroborate the evidence.


Once the evidence is collected and analysed, Lang uses the snapshot option to show common contacts within cases, placing these within his report. Put together, the links and patterns strengthen the Crown’s case and lead to what Lang believes will be a higher likelihood of conviction.


About Cellebrite Founded in 1999, Cellebrite is known for its technological breakthroughs in mobile forensics. Its Universal Forensic Extraction Device (UFED) is used internationally by law enforcement, military, intelligence, corporate security, and eDiscovery agencies to extract data from legacy and feature phones, smartphones, portable GPS, tablets and phones manufactured with Chinese chipsets.


SYTECH – UFED Link Analysis – Child Exploitation Case Study

SYTECH - Gavel

The value of SYTECH Cell-Site & Mobile Phone Evidence – Commendation from an OCG Investigation Team

“The Cell-Site and Mobile Phone interrogation work you did for us with regards to redacted was a complete success.

You may have not been aware but this operation was quite possibly one of the longest run in redacted Police history spanning between April 2011 and February 2013 and has resulted in nearly 70 convictions for drug supply offences in the redacted area of redacted.

The evidence presented was so overwhelming and complex (words of the defence) that both defendants pleaded guilty on two counts of conspiracy to supply class A drugs.

The work you did for us effectively proved our case, that these individuals were leading an organised crime gang who were in the business of supplying class A drugs. The convictions and sentence they got in my opinion was more staggering as we had very minimal/weak drugs possession evidence on both individuals and it was phone work, in particularly cell site evidence that ultimately convicted them. All the physical drug possession evidence was linked (very heavily I may add) to the street dealers who were also convicted for their part in the conspiracy.

I would like to say a big thank you for your assistance in this case and very much hope to be working with you again in the future.”

SYTECH Assisted Case – Digital Forensic Analysis Evidence in Action – Computers & Phones – R -v- Jubb

IT specialist who downloaded most disgusting and appalling child abuse images jailed for two years

Richard Jubb, 26, had been sharing images for 10 years before arrest

AN IT specialist who downloaded among “the most disgusting, appalling” images of child abuse ever seen by a judge has been jailed for two years.

Richard Jubb, 26, of Grand Avenue in Southbourne, admitted possessing more than 21,400 images of children that he shared over social network Twitter with some 200 followers.

The images were branded “some of the most graphic ever recovered” by police officers from Dorset Police’s Paedophile Online Investigation Team, and Judge Peter Johnson also spoke of his horror at their content during the sentencing at Bournemouth Crown Court.

The defendant had been sharing images of abuse online for around 10 years before his arrest.

Prosecutor Carolyn Branford-Wood said Jubb was arrested at a shared home in Broughton Avenue, Bournemouth, on July 29 this year after the National Crime Agency traced his IP address.

She said Jubb immediately confessed to his crimes, telling police that the images were on a hard-drive and adding that he had “stopped” downloading the photographs because they were “sickening” him.

During his first police interview, the defendant provided officers with passwords to a number of email addresses, and he later told them that he had begun to share the images at the age of just 16.

Ms Branford-Wood also gave details of an online conversation between Jubb and a Twitter user known only as ‘Vlad’, in which the defendant said that he enjoyed seeing images of babies and toddlers suffering abuse from men.

Jubb admitted a total of 15 counts, which included distributing indecent images of children, possessing indecent images and possessing extreme pornography.

Mitigating, Kevin Hill said Jubb himself suffered abuse as a three-year-old child, and is believed to be on the autistic spectrum.

“He comes to court in considerable distress,” Mr Hill added.

“[Before this case] he certainly had aspirations for the future and the potential to do very well.”

After taking a short break to view some of the images on Jubb’s hard-drive with Ms Branford-Wood and Mr Hill, a clearly shaken Judge Johnson returned to the court and said: “In my chambers just now, we viewed the most disgusting, appalling scenes of child abuse, and while you say you were eventually sickened, that did not stop you for a considerable period of time from not only obtaining material but also distributing it to others.”
He added: “You have pleaded guilty to 15 counts representing the most appalling abuse of children and babies.”

Jubb will also sign a Sexual Offences Prevention Order following his release from prison.



SYTECH Assisted Case – Utilising Advanced Phone Forensics – Alfie Sullock: Babysitter boyfriend guilty of manslaughter

Alfie Sullock: Babysitter boyfriend guilty of manslaughter


A man who killed his girlfriend’s six-week-old baby by battering him with a shoe and plastic bottle has been found guilty of manslaughter.

Michael Pearce, 33, was looking after Alfie Sullock, from Cardiff, for two hours while the baby’s mother had her first night out following the birth.

Magistrate’s son Pearce, of Nelson, Caerphilly county, was cleared of murder at Newport Crown Court.

Mother Donna Sullock said she was “disappointed” with the verdict.

Alfie had extensive brain damage after the attack and died four days later.

As she wept on the steps of the court after the verdict, the 29-year-old said: “We are disappointed at today’s verdict but satisfied that he will still go to prison for what he’s done.

“Whatever sentence he will get, it will never be long enough for taking Alfie’s life away.

“We have been through a year of absolute hell.”

Donna Sullock said she had been through a year of ‘absolute hell’

Judge Mr Justice Baker thanked the jury, and added: “It is never easy in a case like this.”

Throughout his three-week trial, father-of-one Pearce denied murder and manslaughter.

He said he did not do anything to hurt Alfie, who he killed at his home in August 2013.

Ms Sullock had left Alfie, born on 6 July 2013, with Pearce, who she was in a relationship with at the time, to enjoy her first night out since giving birth.

The pair had become friends while she was six months pregnant, and later became a couple.

Although the court was told Pearce began to display “obsessive behaviour” towards Ms Sullock – and even asked her to give him a child just weeks into their relationship.

Pearce claimed he did not hurt Alfie and gave him mouth-to-mouth resuscitation

‘Trust me’

On 16 August, Ms Sullock travelled from her home in Cardiff to Pearce’s house in Nelson, Caerphilly county, to stay the weekend. Pearce suggested she go out with his friend’s girlfriend for a “girly night out”.

That night Pearce had drunk five pints of beer – four of them in 45 minutes.

He then returned home and looked after Alfie while Ms Sullock got ready.

She told the court her baby was fine when she left Pearce’s house.

But less than half-an-hour into her night out, the pair exchanged a series of text messages.

Pearce maintained Alfie was fine but shortly after he sent a text saying, “you can trust me” he dialled 999 and called Ms Sullock to say Alfie had stopped breathing and was being taken to Prince Charles Hospital.

Alfie was transferred to the University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, where four days later – on 20 August – life support was withdrawn and he died.

A post mortem examination showed Alfie died of blunt trauma injury and extensive bleeding into the brain.

After deliberating for 35 hours and 56 minutes, the jury decided by a majority verdict of 10-2 that Pearce was guilty of manslaughter but cleared him of murder.

Donna Sullock was enjoying her first night out since Alfie’s birth when he was battered by Pearce

Following the verdict Gwent Police’s Ch Insp Leanne Brustad said: “Innocent baby Alfie Sullock was killed at just six weeks old.

“His mother Donna, and Alfie’s extended family, have sat throughout this trial listening to shocking evidence about the nature of his death.

“During an extremely emotional and upsetting time they have handled themselves with great dignity and composure and our thoughts remain with them.”

Pearce will be sentenced on Wednesday.


BBC News – Alfie Sullock: Babysitter boyfriend guilty of manslaughter.

SYTECH Assisted Case – Mobile Phone Forensics including Chip-Off used – Ruthless commuter belt drugs kingpins murdered young hoodlum who sold shotgun they had given him to kill rival

Ruthless commuter belt drugs kingpins murdered young hoodlum who sold shotgun they had given him to kill rival


Former football coach Zain Sailsman, 19, became dealer to fund his habit

Charles Beadell and Ricky Jervis, both 22, raked in around £30,000-a-month selling heroin and crack cocaine in Macclesfield, Cheshire

After he double crossed them, they lured Sailsman to remote woodlands 

Beadell stabbed Sailsman in the back, cutting into his spine 

Beadell and Jervis sentenced to life and told they must serve 27 years

Two young hoodlums who resorted to murder as part of a ruthless plan to build a drugs empire in the heart of the Middle England commuter belt were each jailed for life yesterday.


Charles Beadell and Ricky Jervis, both 22, begun a turf war to terrorise locals into joining their gang after they raked in around £30,000-a-month from peddling heroin and crack cocaine in the silk market town of Macclesfield in Cheshire.

But when former football coach Zain Sailsman, 19, double crossed the pair and sold a shotgun which had been used in a gangland shooting, Beadell and Jervis lured the teenager to woodlands and stabbed him in the back as a ‘punishment’.

Ricky Jervis arrives at Chester Crown Court

Charles Beadell shows his contempt for the law

Murderers: Drug dealers Ricky Jervis (left) and Charles Beadell (right) arrive at Chester Crown Court

As the teenager staggered away dying from his wounds, Beadell who carried out the stabbing told Jervis: ‘The kid thinks he can treat me like a muppet.’

Keep-fit fanatic Sailsman who was nicknamed ‘Black Magic’ climbed over a fence and tried to flee up a country lane but collapsed. Passing motorists tried to help him but he never regained consciousness. It emerged the knife cut into the spine and severed a major blood vessel leading to his heart.

Police investigating the murder later bugged a canal barge and secretly taped another local villain William Dale laughing about Beadell and the victim saying: ‘Horrible little f***** that Charlie is. You know what I mean, cut his fingers off, cut his toes off, cut his ear off – anything but kill the guy.’

Charles Beadell (left) was convicted of the murder of 19-year-old Zain Sailsman who a  post mortem examination revealed had died from a single stab wound

Charles Beadell (left) was convicted of the murder of 19-year-old Zain Sailsman who a post mortem examination revealed had died from a single stab wound

At Chester Crown Court, Beadell, from Macclesfield and Jervis, 22, from Congleton were both convicted of murder after a six-week trial and were each ordered to serve a minimum of 27 years.

Zain Sailsman was a drug dealer who was murdered when he double-crossed other dealers

Zain Sailsman was a drug dealer who was murdered when he double-crossed other dealers

Jervis tried to spit at police but missed and soiled the glass of the dock.

Beadell’s girlfriend Julia Howard, 36, a student forensic psychologist, who acted as the getaway driver was cleared of murder but convicted of perverting the course of justice and was jailed for three years.

Dale, 25, was jailed for 14 years after he admitted drugs and firearms offences.

Passing sentence the judge Mr Justice Robert Jay said: ‘This case, as countless previous cases have done, highlights in cruel and graphic terms the grief, the misery, the human and social costs, of drug addiction and drug dealing.

‘I have no doubt that the motive of both of you was to punish Zain Sailsman for what you felt was his cheeky attitude over time.

‘You Beadell, knew that the gun had gone – you Jervis at the very least believed that it was highly likely that it had gone, and were of a mind to punish Zain Sailsman.’

The jury was told Macclesfield’s drugs rackets had been orchestrated by Dale from his barge which was moored between Congleton and Alsagar.

Dale was said to buy drugs in bulk and sell them on through a network of lower level dealers in towns across Cheshire and Staffordshire and would hire Beadell and Jervis.

Charles Beadell was sentenced to life imprisonment with a recommendation he serves a minimum of 27 years for the murder of  19-year-old Zain Sailsman

Charles Beadell was sentenced to life imprisonment with a recommendation he serves a minimum of 27 years for the murder of  19-year-old Zain Sailsman

But Beadell and Jervis wanted to take greater control of the Macclesfield drugs market after hoodlums from Manchester tried to move in on the area. Beadell himself was selling narcotics purely to make money for pure ‘greed’ and was turning over up to £1,000 a day on his own and would get his girlfriend to drive him around and was ‘fuming’ that outsiders were trying to grab his turf.

He eventually recruited Sailsman a former youth team coach at non-league Macclesfield Town in Cheshire after exploiting the teenager’s drug habit.

Sailsman who wanted free access to crack cocaine began selling drugs for Beadell and was eventually used as a hired gun to terrorise a rival small-time dealer.

Last October Sailsman was driven to the home of their target where he used a 12 gauge shotgun to pump two bullets through the front door at point range – missing a couple and two children who were inside.

Julia Howard arriving at Chester Crown Court to be sentenced for her part in the murder of Zain Sailsman

Julia Howard arriving at Chester Crown Court to be sentenced for her part in the murder of Zain Sailsman

No one was injured but the rival who was not at home at the time was terrified enough to start working for Beadell.

The gun was later hidden in woodland with the ammunition hidden in a churchyard but Sailsman dug up the weapon and secretly sold it to pay for his own drug use before fleeing to Blackpool.

Beadell later contacted Sailsman’s mother Madeline Fletcher on Facebook saying people were coming to the house as her son had ‘taken something’ from him.

Mrs Fletcher, 48, told the jury that she and her three daughters had already been threatened by her son’s criminal associates with her car and house being vandalised.

The family home was turned into a ‘fortress’ with panic alarms and a fire- and bombproof letterbox.

She said: ‘I had told Zain there was consequences to his actions. It was the way I tried to bring my kids up. They threatened they would petrol bomb the house. I was living in fear.’

Mrs Fletcher said she had been called by her son from Blackpool asking for money and added: ‘He was crying, which wasn’t like him. He admitted carrying out the shooting with Charlie. I was shocked, especially as children were in the house. I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t transfer money but said he would have to come back.

‘I tried to make him see sense about the shooting. I couldn’t believe he could stoop so low. He said it was him who pulled the trigger. No one else had the bottle to do it. I told him to turn himself in.’

Julia Howard, 36, a student forensic psychologist, who acted as the getaway driver was cleared of murder but convicted of perverting the course of justice and was jailed for three years

William Dale, 25, was jailed for 14 years after he admitted drugs and firearms offences+9

Jailed: Julia Howard, 36, a student forensic psychologist, who acted as the getaway driver was cleared of murder but convicted of perverting the course of justice and was jailed for three years; William Dale, 25, was jailed for 14 years after he admitted drugs and firearms offences

Sailsman was brought back to Macclesfield by relatives and he tried to keep a low profile but paid with his life when he agreed to meet Beadell on the pretext of recovering the shotgun and to continue working for him.

In a text exchange Sailsman asked Jervis: ‘Not a set up or anything’ and Jervis replied: ‘What are you on? You’re one of the boys, I trust you.’

Beadell, Jervis and Sailsman were later driven to the woods by Howard on October 30.

Sailsman had planned to pretend to look for the gun by a tree then feign innocence when they could not find it – not knowing Beadell was armed with a 12-inch bladed knife.

Jervis told the court: ‘Zain was digging around for a couple of minutes with his hands. He looks a bit confused, gets up, looking and Charlie gets down and starts looking.

‘How do you lose a shotgun? You don’t lose a shotgun. Someone said we should go back in the morning and look for it. Zain swore on his mother’s life that hadn’t been there or moved the gun but Charlie started raising his voice saying: “You’re saying it’s me who took it”.

Ricky Jervis was jailed for 27 years for murder

‘They carried on arguing and then Charlie lunged at Zain and came away screaming and shouting. Zain’s turned away from him and I saw the knife. He was moving the trees out the way. Charlie had the knife in his right hand. Zain ran towards the fence ‘I said stop, man, stop! Zain said, “What the f***? What’s he done that for?” I didn’t realise how badly hurt he was.

‘I said to Charlie “What the f***, he’s supposed to be your guy, you just stabbed him.” I was shocked.’

Beadell and Howard fled Macclesfield and checked into various hotels but were arrested two days later. Jervis was arrested as he was fleeing into the countryside carrying a bag containing his clothes stained in the victim’s blood.

All three denied murder. Beadell claimed Sailsman was stabbed by two drug dealers from Liverpool.

In a statement after the case, Sailsman’s family said: ‘Zain’s life has been cruelly and tragically cut short and regardless of the sentence imposed his murderers will one day walk free and be able to resume their lives. Zain will never get that opportunity. In our eyes no sentence will ever be long enough.

‘Zain’s death has ripped the heart out of our family and our lives will never be the same without him in them. Zain was no angel in life but to us he was always the little boy with the cheeky smile and the big sense of humour. He did not deserve to die the way in which he did.’


Ruthless commuter belt drugs kingpins murdered young hoodlum who sold shotgun they had given him to kill rival  | Mail Online.