A dishonest solicitor who forged documents and stole clients’ mortgage payments after taking charge of a law firm has been jailed for seven years and six months.
Andrew John Davies, 34, was jailed at Bolton Crown Court having pleaded guilty to 42 charges including fraud, forgery and money laundering at an earlier hearing.
Davies embarked on a series of fraudulent activities including forging legal documents such as bank statements and building regulation certificates, and even falsifying a barrister’s legal opinion.
Shortly after the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) began an investigation into the firm in 2014, Davies transferred six-figure mortgage payments from clients – one for £270,398 and another for £205,714 – into his own bank account.
The SRA found that in all £833,450 was missing from client account. None has been repaid, causing losses to the firm’s insurer and the SRA’s compensation fund.
Davies pleaded guilty to 19 counts of forgery, 18 counts of fraud by abuse of position, four counts of transferring criminal property, and one count of false accounting.
(Source – Legal Futures website)