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HindustanTimes Wed,20 Aug 2014

5-yr jail for conman who defrauded Indians in UK

Prasun Sonwalkar, Hindustan Times  London, June 19, 2014
First Published: 19:33 IST(19/6/2014) | Last Updated: 19:35 IST(19/6/2014)

An Indian-origin conman who defrauded several members of the Indian community here of nearly 650,000 pounds between 2006 and 2013 by promising to facilitate buying property, has been jailed for five years.
 
Mortgage fraudster Jaspal Singh Juttla, 55, was sentenced at the Isleworth Crown Court for 26 counts of fraud after he pleaded guilty to the offences. He claimed to be a mortgage broker who promised big investment returns to his victims if they invested in his property schemes.

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The police said that Juttla would meet his clients, who were predominantly Indian and spoke little or no English, at various locations in London. Often he would present official documentation like letter headed paper, invoices, receipts and agreements to his unsuspecting victims to disguise his elaborate scam.

Once the agreed amounts were handed over, contact would immediately cease. On occasions, victims contacted him to ask what was going on, but Juttla would claim that the deal still needed time and that his accountant was ill or on holiday.

“The largest single loss faithfully handed over to him was £100,130 by a Hindu Pundit from a Temple in Southall. A couple who worked four jobs between them for ten years to obtain £84,000 to buy a property also lost their money”, the police said.

Detective Constable Stephen Rothwell: "Juttla fed his gambling habit and need for luxury goods and cars by exploiting his trusting victims and stealing their hard earned cash. He had promised members of his own community that he would help them to move up the London property ladder and build the best future for their families”.
 
He added: “Many of the victims did not have the confidence to come forward and report Juttla's actions due to their minimal understanding of the property market, policing procedures and embarrassment about being conned”.

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