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Court convicts ‘greedy’ landlords for mortgage fraud

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Two Welsh buy-to-let landlords and a surveyor have been found guilty of conspiring to defraud mortgage lenders after a trial lasting almost five months.

Welsh property speculator Antony Lowry-Huws, 63, and business partner Sheila Rose Whalley, 66, were convicted along with Lancashire-based surveyor Frank Edward Darlington, 60 for obtaining thousands of pounds in mortgage loans by deceit, according to the Daily Post.

A second surveyor was found not guilty. The jury is still considering its verdicts against two other defendants, a solicitor and a financial adviser. The judge said their offence was triggered by “pure greed and nothing more”.

He said the defendants took part in a conspiracy in which some were more involved and stood to gain as a result: “The essence of the case is deceiving mortgage lenders, banks, into parting with their money and lending when they would not had they known the truth.”

There could only be one sentence – imprisonment, he added.

Between 2003 and 2008 the landlords inflated the value of properties in their portfolio, in some cases hiding the fact no deposit was put down or inflating the rental income potential. In some cases the mortgages were secured on properties which did not exist.

The uncovering of Lowry-Huws and Whalley’s deception began in December 2007, when a woman found mortgage applications had been made in her son’s name and raised the alarm. Bradford and Bingley initially investigated and later called in the police.

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