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Cleric jailed for 14 years for property fraud

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  • 25/04/2016
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Cleric jailed for 14 years for property fraud
A Muslim cleric used his position and influence to mastermind a multi-million pound property fraud and tax-dodging conspiracy, a court has ruled.

The Yorkshire Post reports that Mehboob Akhtar, also known as Saint Pirwali Pandariman, from Stoke-on-Trent was given a 14-year jail sentence at Birmingham Crown Court on Thursday after his conviction last month on 11 offences, including cheating the tax man of £271,000, and conspiring to commit fraud.

The Staffordshire-based 60 year old operated with nine other family members and business associates, who were all found guilty of lying to mortgage lenders to buy property worth nearly £1m in the Fenton area.

Akhtar was jailed alongside his wife Khajida after both exaggerated their income on mortgage applications, avoiding hundreds of thousands in tax between 2003 and 2012.

The mastermind used the names of his wife, daughter and niece to apply for mortgages from 2005 to 2014.

In 2012 police uncovered forged documents and emails relating to the conspiracy at Akhtar’s home.

Sentencing him on Thursday, Judge Stephen Eyre QC said: “(You used) the prestige and devotion of others to facilitate this offending.”

 

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