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Six charged in £50m ‘mortgage fraud’

Six people have been charged with offences in connection with a series of high value commercial mortgage frauds. 

The investigation was referred to the Serious Fraud Office in March 2006 by West Midlands Police following a complaint by Cheshire Building Society.

It is alleged that the defendants participated in a series of frauds whereby they dishonestly obtained loans from banks or building societies that were secured on six commercial investment properties.

Each property was transferred between companies controlled by one of the defendants and his associates at highly inflated prices in a series of back to back transactions. On the basis of the grossly inflated prices, fraudulent valuations and forged leases, the defendants applied for and obtained mortgage advances totalling nearly £50m. 

The mortgages were quickly defaulted on and the lenders suffered significant losses.

Following a hearing today at City of London Magistrates Court the case has been sent to Southwark Crown Court for a preliminary hearing on January 4 2010.

Five individuals, Ian McGarry ( born 10/05/69), Hardeep Sodhi (born 05/10/76), Fatema Patwa (born 20/02/62), Saghir Afzal (born 01/01/62) and Laurence Ferrigan (born 20/11/61) have been charged with offences of conspiracy to obtain a money transfer by deception and dishonestly obtaining a money transfer.

Simon Lawrence (born 07/04/61) has been charged with conspiracy to obtain a money transfer by deception.

At the relevant time Ian McGarry was a chartered surveyor at Dunlop Haywards Lorenz, Fatema Patwa was the sole principal of her own firm, Patwa Solicitors, based in Birmingham,Hardeep Sodhi was a solicitor employed at Patwa Solicitors in Birmingham, Laurence Ferrigan was a partner at The CFB Partnership, Wanstead, East London, Saghir Afzal was a company director and property owner, Simon Lawrence was a partner of Darlingtons Solicitors in, Edgware.



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There are 5 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Solicitors — very often the biggest crooks on the block..

  2. Agree with 4.32pm, and also well qualified (well on paper anyway)

  3. What a suprise, Asian solicitors at the heart of it. Guess the money went to Al-Queda to blow our troops up in Afghanistan?

  4. Another example of a Building Society having their fingers burnt when straying from their original core business of lending on houses!

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