Top lawyer denies Santander mortgage fraud

Top lawyer denies Santander mortgage fraud


A court has heard that a solicitor who has been accused of creating a fake property sale in order to pocket a six-figure sum from a Santander mortgage has denied helping to launder the proceeds, Court News UK reported.

On Monday (19th November) and before Southwark Crown Court, Richard Zacharias, 36, denied his alleged involvement in a scam specifically set up to launder the proceeds of a £100,000 mortgage from high street lender Santander.

According to the Court News UK report, prosecutors alleged that Zacharias -owner of Cheshire-based law firm Zacharias Taylor Solicitors Ltd, which specialises in dealing with conveyancing and commercial property matters – abused his position as a top lawyer, creating a “guise of legitimate conveyance” so that the money could change hands to the fraudsters.


previously reported

that Zacharias, who is also known as James, allegedly forged a mortgage application and a falsified bank statement in order to convince the high street lender to pay out; he subsequently used his law firm to cover up the £100,000 transfer to fellow fraudster Howard Daly.

On 12th August 2011, the SRA intervened in both Zacharias’ personal practices and those of Zacharias Taylor, ceasing both from operating and taking possession of all documents, papers and money held by the firm. In addition, Zacharias’ certificate to legal practice was revoked.

The Authority cited the breach of the Solicitors’ Accounts Rules (1998) and, in particular, Rule 7 which requires for any breach of conduct to be “remedied promptly on discovery” and “includes the replacement of any money improperly withheld of withdrawn from a client account”.

Zacharias had allegedly also breached the Solicitors’ Code of Conduct (2007) and specifically two “core duties”, including the requirement to “act with integrity” and “in the best interests of each client”.


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    Richard Zacharias should also be noted that on 22nd November 2012, the jury decided unanimously 12 - 0 that the said solicitor was "not guilty" of all charges

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