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Posted on May 16th 2016 by admin-movingin

Fake agents who ripped off 21 tenants to tune of £26,000 are sentenced

Original Author: Rosalind Renshaw

A couple conned tenants out of some £26,000 by pretending to be letting agents.

Sahila Kauser and Andrew Rickard ripped off 21 tenants in London, Birmingham, Bristol and Walsall.

They showed tenants around properties, taking deposits. They then told the prospective renters that they had failed credit checks, but offered to accept six months’ rent in advance.

When the tenants arrived at the properties, they would find them already occupied.

The offences took place in 2012 and 2013.

The scam was hatched while Rickard was in prison for cannabis dealing. He was befriended by the alleged ringleader who has yet to stand trial.

Kauser, 34, and Rickard, 51, of West Bromwich in the west midlands, admitted conspiracy to defraud.

Rickard was given 18 months in jail but Kauser had her 18 month sentence suspended for two years so that she could look after the couple’s two children.

The sentencing was at Southwark Crown Court where Judge Martin Beddoe said: “This is a concerted and wicked fraud in which you tricked would-be tenants of residential properties.”

“You thereby engaged in tricking them to believe they could secure somewhere to live.

“Some did in fact get somewhere to live but several didn’t. They had the distress of coming to an address to find someone else living there.

“You took the money off these people in two ways, first by taking a deposit to secure the tenancy.

“Then more was undertaken by you, Mr Rickard, and the ringleader, tricking them into believing there was a problem with their credit rating and they had to pay a substantial amount of rent in advance.”