A convicted mortgage fraudster has been stripped of more than £4million in criminal assets after prosecutors forced him to sell off his property empire or face further time in prison.
Independent financial advisor Adeel Mirza, 47, was convicted of nine counts of fraud in 2013 and jailed for six years.
Following his conviction Mirza was ordered to pay back £4,180,788.32 and specialist lawyers from the Crown Prosecution Service Proceeds of Crime (CPSPOC) division began complex negotiations to recover the sum for the taxpayer.
Prosecutors arranged the sale of nine houses across London – the majority of Mirza’s UK property portfolio – which were all registered to a trust in Jersey. With the help of the authorities in Jersey, the CPS was able to register the confiscation order on the island so that the properties could be seized and sold.
Holly Morton, Specialist Prosecutor for CPSPOC, said:
“Adeel Mirza used a complex network of companies to illegally gain millions of pounds for himself and his corrupt and criminal associates.
“We have now ensured he will not be able to continue to benefit from his crimes once out of jail.
“Criminals must realise that we will seek confiscation of their assets. When they are caught committing these kinds of crimes they will lose their liberty and will not return to lives of luxury on release.
“The success of this case demonstrates the determined and effective joint action between the CPS, National Crime Agency and overseas authorities in ensuring that criminals do not get to retain the benefit of their crimes.”
Mirza’s scheme was uncovered after a NCA investigation revealed he had provided false income and employment details in order to obtain substantially inflated mortgages.
The investigation uncovered a complex network of payments, bank accounts and properties held by companies in different countries and under different names, including unsuspecting members of Mirza’s family. These mortgages were arranged for clients, including a heroin dealer.
Mirza was convicted of seven offences of Obtaining Money Transfers by Deception and two counts of Conspiracy to Obtain a Money Transfer by Deception. On 22 August 2013 Mirza was sentenced to six years’ imprisonment.
He was ordered to pay £4,180,788.32 at Southwark Crown Court on 24 September 2015 with a six year default sentence if he did not pay. The order has now been fully satisfied.