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East Lancashire conman in £1million buy-to-let homes scam

10:20am Saturday 10th September 2011

By Peter Magill »

Chief reporter

A FINANCE fraudster from East Lancashire confessed to being involved in a buy-to-let property scam estimated at more than £1million.

Twenty-one homes in Burnley and Pendle were involved in the racket.

Investors from Ireland were tempted with the promise of purchasing properties with guaranteed rental income, Manchester Crown Court was told.

But finance boss Mark Lenton Jopson, alongside estate agent Raymond Abramson and their accomplice John Edwards, left a trail of broken promises and conned investors because prices were over-inflated.

Abramson was a bankrupt and used a false name - Trevor Smith - as part of the fraud. Jopson, who ran his own financial services company – Mark Jopson Financial Services – based on the Junction Seven business park at Clayton-le-Moors, was recruited to take part in the con.

The trio made false promises about the extent to which the East Lancashire homes had been refurbished, and the availability of mortgage financing.

The defendants had also lied about the extent to which the trio were able to secure tenants for the Burnley and Pendle houses, and the amount of rental income investors could expect.

Prosecutor Andrew Nuttall QC said it had been agreed with defence counsel that the fraud related to 21 of 31 properties on the defendants' books.

While some refurbishments had taken place, the trio accepted that the repairs were 'inadequate', regarding some of the homes.

Mr Nuttall said the prosecution accepted that problems with the refurbishments were exacerbated by widespread 'theft and vandalism' at the properties.

Abramson is said to have recruited Jopson to the scam. Edwards, who had known Abramson for some time, was described as a 'sub-ordinate', but he accepted he knew the scheme was fraudlent at an early stage.

All three were arrested after a lengthy investigation by Greater Manchester Police's serious and organised crime unit.

The defendants were set to face an eight to 10 week long trial before changing their pleas at the 11th hour.

Jopson, 52, of Quarry Street, Padiham, Abramson, 68, of Hampstead Drive, Whitefield, and Edwards, 43, of Queens Drive, Prestwich, each admitted conspiracy to defraud between January 2005 and September 2008, and were remanded on bail for pre-sentence reports until November 28.

Medical reports will be sought for Abramson, who is said to have a number of medical difficulties, and a pyschiatric report will be compiled on behalf of Edwards.

The defendants will also face Proceeds of Crime Act hearings following their sentencing.

The original conspiracy was said to have involved 23 victims and led to losses totalling more than £1million.

Jeffrey Samuels QC, defending Abramson, said it was understood by the defendants that they were at risk of receiving custodial sentences.

Further charges that Jopson aided and abetted a bankrupt engaging in trade, and in the management of a company, which he denied, are set to be dropped by the prosecution.

Similar related charges against Abramson and Edwards are expected to be dismissed at the next court hearing.

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East Dunfermline conman in £6 trillion buy-to-let homes scam


...and this was high risk retail banking ...do you get it Vince ...?....or do you not...?....our savings are not safe in lending ventures like this..... :rolleyes:

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Lying about rental income is every day practice in Estate Agents, how else would 'savvy investors' (dont make me laugh) been drawn into buying property in the current market which generally carries minus - no return at all?

Anyway if your stupid enough to buy an 'investment property' in an area of which you have no knowledge & off the back of what a lying EA says, then you're really asking for it and shouldn't be suprised if it downs out duff.


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  • 333 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

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      • down 5% +
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