Conveyancer guilty in £1.25m mortgage fraud network

Conveyancer guilty in £1.25m mortgage fraud network


A former legal executive and mother of three has been jailed for her part in a £1.25m mortgage fraud involving fake mortgage applications, the BBC reports.

46-year-old Humaira Shah of Luton submitted applications to numerous lenders, attempting to defraud them of almost £3 million.

She was part of an organised crime network, and had been recruited by the gang due to her position as a property conveyancer.

By the time authorities caught up with her, £1.25 million had been obtained through the scams. At Luton Crown Court, she was convicted of six offences of fraud and 11 counts of converting criminal property. She had previously been struck off as a legal executive in 2009.

The jury heard how Shah had already made arrangements to start a new life in Liberia, having started a business there and opened a foreign bank account.

Shah is not thought to have been the ring leader of the most recent scam. Businessman Zyed Zeeshan Maroof, coined ‘Mr Big’ by the BBC, is thought to have fled the country with a substantial proportion of the money, which had been paid into bank accounts and then quickly withdrawn or transferred.

Judge Michael Kay was told that £1 million was still outstanding.

Before being struck off as a legal executive, Shah had opened two law firms, S&S Solicitors and Huma Law, which operated from the same address in Cardiff Street, Luton.

Jonathan Kirk, prosecuting, said: “She used the respectability of her profession in an attempt to defraud mortgage companies of more than £3 million.

Shah was also found guilty of acts intending to pervert the course of public justice over a fake immigration process.

She denied all the charges and was found guilty by the jury. The court was told that Shah had been ‘corrupted’ by others and had made little profit from the fraud.

Sentencing, the judge told her: “The structure of buying properties on mortgage depends on the honesty and integrity of conveyancers.”


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