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Ex-Barclays adviser jailed for £600k fraud

An ex-Barclays adviser has been jailed after stealing £600,000 from dead, elderly and ill customers to fund his gambling addiction.

James Leonard Finnigan was jailed for four years at the Old Bailey on July 15, having pleaded guilty to the fraud. Finnigan worked as an adviser at a Barclays branch in Twickenham between 1999 and May 2010.

Detective sergeant Ben Flannaghan, who led the investigation, said: “It may be cliched to describe a criminal as heartless but in this instance it is difficult to think of a more apt description.

“James Finnigan appeared to target customers who were elderly in the hope of avoiding detection, in some cases going as far as taking money from accounts when customers had recently died. There can be no justifications for his actions, and his sentence reflects that.”

A Barclays spokesman says: “We have a zero-tolerance policy towards staff fraud. Where any employee involvement is suspected, individuals will be suspended, investigated and, where there is evidence of misconduct, dismissed.”

In January, Money Marketing revealed that Barclays was closing its advice arm, Barclays Financial Planning. The bank aims to develop an online execution-only service for mass-market clients instead.

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