Benefit fraudster ordered to pay back £315k at Leeds Crown Court or face four more years in jail

A man who created a number of false identities to get morgates and claim benefits has been ordered to pay back £315,000 at Leeds Crown Court.

Wednesday, 7th August 2019, 17:20 pm
Malcolm Leslie Forsyth has been ordered to pay back more than 315,000.

Malcolm Leslie Forsyth, from Huddersfield, created a number of false identities to get mortgages, open bank accounts and claim benefits

He was jailed for four years in November 2016 after being convicted of 15 offences of fraud.

Since then, financial investigations established that he made £465,554 from his crimes.

He had available assets in the form of two properties worth £315,000.

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At the hearing at Leeds Crown Court on Tuesday, August 6 he was ordered to pay the money back.

If he does not, he will face a further four-year jail term.

He initially tried to claim that one of the properties was his uncles but the judge found that he had misled the court.

Ramona Senior, Head of the Economic Crime Unit and North East Regional Asset Recovery Team, said: “At every stage, Forsyth has tried to hamper our enquiries but thanks to the thorough investigation carried out by the team we have been able to unpick his lies and ensure that he is made to pay for his crimes.

“The available assets consists of two properties, which were both owned under false identities. Forsyth claimed that both properties were legitimate and that one of the properties was actually his uncle’s. The uncle was ordered to attend court to provide evidence to support this. HHJ Batiste found he has mislead the court and rejected his evidence in its entirety.”

Mark Burns-Williamson, West Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC), said: “Once again this case illustrates the great work of West Yorkshire Police and prosecutors in ensuring that crime doesn’t pay. I would like to pass on my thanks to the officers and staff involved.

“An amount of this recovered money will now be put back into our communities through my Safer Communities Fund. The Fund gives grants made up from recovered proceeds of crime money to not for profit groups and organisations for various projects throughout West Yorkshire that help to keep our communities safe.”

A proportion of the £315,000 will be used to compensate the victims involved in the case.