Ex-magistrate loses £4m appeal
by Hannah Shroot • Published 8 May 2012 09:00 0 Comments
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A FORMER magistrate's appeal against a Thames Valley Police £4m confiscation order was unsuccessful.
Nirmal Sharma, 53, from Langley Road, Slough, appealed following the confiscation order granted in 2010, but this was dismissed in March following a police investigation which spanned five years and included investigating offshore accounts and assets in Guernsey, Singapore and India.
Phillip Croxson, Accredited Financial Investigator from the Economic Crime Unit, Thames Valley Police, said: "This has been an extremely lengthy and complex case, and the original decision of the Court has now been upheld on important points of principle. The legislation is very powerful, and is designed to ensure that crime does not pay."
Mr Sharma was arrested in July 2003 on suspicion of fraudulently obtaining money from his clients by claiming they owed payments to Customs and Excise or Inland Revenue.
He was charged with ten counts of procuring the execution of a valuable security by deception and one count of false accounting, and one count of acts to pervert the course of justice, after making contact with one of the complainants.
In 2007 he was sentenced to 30 months imprisonment for theft of approximately £40,000 and nine months imprisonment for attempting to pervert the course of justice, after which Thames Valley Police began the investigation into his finances, and were granted a confiscation order for £4,101,339 in January 2010.
The appeal stated the confiscation order was disproportionate and related to matters for which Mr Sharma had not been found guilty in criminal proceedings but the appeal was dismissed following a hearing on March 14.