A COUPLE who lived the high life on proceeds of a massive mortgage fraud have been ordered to pay back £500,000.
Anthony and Samantha Nixon of Morley bought a string of properties across Leeds and bought prestige cars and enjoyed foreign holidays.
A police investigation revealed their legitimate income was insufficient to fund their lifestyle.
In May 2006 the pair were handed suspended jail sentences after pleading guilty to conspiring to obtain money transfers by deception and money laundering offences as part of the conspiracy worth over £1m.Now the couple’s illegal earnings have been subject of a confiscation hearing at Leeds Crown Court.
A judge ordered Anthony Morley, 46, to pay back £359,833.08 within six months or face five years in jail.
Samantha, 41, was told her sentence would increase by three years if she did not pay back £158,893.08 within six months.
The pair obtained several fraudulent mortgages by over declaring their earnings and provided false information in order to inflate the value of these houses to make a profit from the re-sale.
Temporary Detective Chief Inspector Fran Naughton, of West Yorkshire Police’s Economic Crime Unit, said: “In this case, mortgages were obtained by fraudulent means and the couple profited a significant amount of money as a result of their criminal activities.
“Between them, the couple benefited from a total of over £1.1million and I am delighted that their assets have now been confiscated.
“Those who are profiting from the proceeds of crime should take this as a warning that West Yorkshire Police will be onto them and they will be stripped of their ill gotten gains.”
In 1999, Anthony Nixon bought a property in Morley for £160,000. The mortgage used to buy the house was found to be fraudulent, which in turn made the house criminal property. In 2004 the house was sold to a third defendant at an over inflated price of £495,000.