Solicitor jailed for Stamp Duty fraud
A Leicester solicitor has been jailed for stealing almost £1m after he falsified property conveyancing documents and lied to clients.
Shameer Sacranie, 40, was sentenced to ten years yesterday (25 September 2014) following an investigation by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).
He was due to appear in Nottingham Crown Court on 8 September, but had fled the country after being arrested in December 2011.
The investigation revealed that Sacranie had altered legal documents to reduce Stamp Duty on 139 properties bought by his clients. He then charged clients for the Stamp Duty in excess of the reduced amounts and kept the difference.
Stuart Taylor, assistant director of criminal investigation at HMRC, said: "As a solicitor, Sacranie knew only too well what the consequences of his actions would be. To abuse the trust of his clients was a despicable act, stealing money that had been paid by them in good faith to meet their tax liabilities.
"This sentence should serve as a reminder to those who hold positions of trust that the justice system takes a firm line on those who fall foul of the law."