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Broker slams ‘ruinous’ three-year bail

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28/05/2013
A Shropshire mortgage broker has spoken out about the
Broker slams ‘ruinous’ three-year bail

The mortgage broker and his wife were arrested in September 2010 on suspicion of conspiracy to launder money through various properties, according to the BBC.

They were then released – but forced to live under the conditions of the bail until May 2013. These included a restraining order on the couple’s bank accounts and properties, disclosure of incoming and outgoing payments, confiscation of their passports, laptops and mobile phones.

‘Andrew’ said: “We couldn’t afford to operate from our office so we had to move out of that and instead to work from home.

“My wife and I are relieved that no charges have been brought, but our business was ruined during our time on bail. We’ve been left penniless and with a huge solicitors’ bill that we can’t pay.”

Nearly 60,000 people are currently on bail. Of these, one in twenty has been waiting for more than six months for a decision on charges.

There is currently no limit on how long a person can be kept on police bail before a decision on whether to charge them is made.

The Law Society is calling for a review of police bail practices and says there should be a statutory time limit on police bail.

A West Mercia police spokesman said the force recognised the suspects were on bail for a lengthy period of time: “”This was due to the complex nature of the case which involved the gathering of a significant volume of financial and other evidence which had to be reviewed and assessed prior to the recent decision having been made.

“Every time a person answers their bail and returns to a police station the investigating officer must satisfy the custody officer that it is necessary for that person to remain on bail and that inquiries are being carried out expeditiously.”

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