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Solicitor struck off over fake mortgage witness claims

Houses, house, property, monopoly

The legal regulator has struck off a lawyer who falsely claimed to have witnessed signatures on mortgage documents.

Stewart Stocker of law firm Lauriston Saggar sent an identity certificate of satisfaction, loan facility letter and legal mortgage over a property to second law firm J Solicitors in January 2017.

He claimed his clients, who are not named by the Solicitors’ Regulatory Authority in a recent ruling, had signed them in his presence.

However, the SRA has ruled that this never happened and has struck him off its register following a tribunal.

The documents related to a £945,000 mortgage advanced by special purpose vehicle R SPV2 Limited.

The loan was for 15 months and secured over a buy-to-let property owned by Stocker’s clients.

Stocker said he felt under pressure with deadlines but did not accept acting dishonestly.

The situation unravelled when Stocker confessed to the managing director of the lender involved that he had only witnessed the signatures of one of the two clients.

The lender then alerted J Solicitors and later pulled the deal.

Stocker was also ordered to pay £4,980 in costs.



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