Following an investigation, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has started criminal proceedings against two individuals over an alleged conspiracy around mortgage fraud.
The regulator explained that the proceedings relate to allegations of conspiracy to commit fraud by false representation involving both Larry Barreto and Tassib Hussain, plus a further two alleged offences by Barreto of carrying on regulated activities without authorisation.
Barreto traded as Barreto and Partners, an unauthorised financial services firm based in Nottingham. Tassib Hussain is an accountant who ran Keystone Chartered Accountants also based in Nottingham.
According to the FCA, the fraud charges relate to a series of mortgage applications made between January 2015 and March 2018. The alleged conspiracy involved mortgage clients of Barreto.
The FCA alleged that if Barreto concluded that the clients had insufficient income to justify the mortgage they required, he would charge the client a fee which he would then pay in cash to Hussain, to create the false self-employment and employment documentation to support mortgage applications for clients with insufficient income.
The total value of the mortgages applied for was about £3.8m.
The unauthorised business charges relate to advice provided and arrangements made regarding a series of regulated mortgage contracts between June 2014 and March 2018. The FCA said Barreto is an unauthorised and prohibited person and as such could not provide regulated financial services.
Fraud is punishable by a fine and/or up to 10 years’ imprisonment. Unauthorised business is punishable by a fine and/or up to two years’ imprisonment.