A senior police officer accused of mortgage fraud has been cleared after a jury took just 20 minutes to find him not guilty, the Manchester Evening News reports.
Chief Inspector John Buttress, a senior officer in the Greater Manchester Police, had been accused of fraudulently obtaining a residential mortgage for a second property in North Wales, which was subsequently let out for holiday rentals.
The property had been purchased with Buttress’ wife Andrea in 2007, with a joint residential mortgage from Intelligent Finance.
Following the couple’s divorce, Buttress purchased his ex-wife’s share of the property and applied for a remortgage, which the prosecution alleged had been obtained fraudulently as he did not mention he intended to rent out the property.
However, the jury returned a not guilty verdict after just 20 minutes of deliberations.
Detective Chief Constable Ian Hopkins says: “We fully respect the jury’s verdict. GMP will always take allegations about its staff seriously and where necessary will carry out criminal investigations.
“The public have a right to expect that allegations regarding the integrity of serving officers are properly explored and tested.”
The report also states that Buttress could still face an internal disciplinary hearing.