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15 May 24

Two London agents who traded fraudulently through their lettings business and scammed victims out of over £24,000 have been sentenced.

After a lengthy and protracted investigation into the activities of a number of letting agencies, the two defendants – Akther of Rainham and Noor Rashid of Beckton – pleaded guilty to fraudulent trading.

This was following numerous complaints linked to Signature London Ltd and Signature London Group Ltd for duping prospective tenants, landlords and existing tenants. 

Victims had rent deposits collected and never returned, holding funds stolen and – in the case of landlords – collected rents not being transferred into their accounts.

Akther and Rashid defrauded victims of at least £24,000 through a range of letting and rental scams.

The sentences given were for Akther, 14 months imprisonment suspended for 18 months concurrent for each indictment and fined £2,000; Noor Rashid, 24 months community order (80 hours of unpaid work included).

The defendants were prosecuted following an investigation led by the National Trading Standards Regional Investigations Team, supported by officers from Barking and Dagenham council

A council spokesperson says: “The accused may have thought they had a fool proof scam which would have made it difficult or impossible for people affected to recover their money. I want to thank our Trading Standards officers for sticking with it and ensuring justice is served.”

And Trish Burls from Trading Standards adds: “Taking advantage of first-time buyers, exploiting homeowners’ desires to move and disrupting the everyday practice of reputable landlords demonstrates the utter disregard the defendants had for the wellbeing of others.”

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