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Estate agent to pay back only £1 after stealing over £350,000 in rents and deposits

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  • 27/03/2019
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Estate agent to pay back only £1 after stealing over £350,000 in rents and deposits
An estate agent will repay only £1 after stealing over £350,000 in rent and deposits.

Clifford Wheatcroft (pictured), 35,  ran Real-Est8 Property Solutions in Bournemouth but the firm went bust in 2012. It was then discovered he had not put tenants’ deposits in a protection scheme.

Enquiries showed that Wheatcroft had spent the money on personal items, including holidays, with the Crown Prosecution Service unable to find any of the missing money.

Judge Stephen Climie, at Bournemouth Crown Court, warned Wheatcroft that the Proceeds of Crime order would be with him ‘for the rest of his life’.

He added that a change of finances -which could include a chance win, inheritance or also legitimate employment – will result in some of the money being reclaimed in order to pay off the debt.

Detective Constable Mandy Brimicombe, of Dorset Police, said that the case was lengthy and complex, as is often the case with these types of financial investigations where there are a number of victims losing thousands of pounds.

Last year, Wheatcroft was given a 17-month sentence suspended for two years and ordered to carry out 250 hours of unpaid work after admitting eight counts of theft.

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