We might not have a Maserati. But all our deposits are safe and fully insured! An agent who is s...
We might not have a Maserati. But all our deposits are safe and fully insured!
An agent who is said to have driven around in a Maserati complete with personalised number plates has been sentenced after admitting fraud to do with tenancy deposits.
Keith Martin, 51, the boss of Seekers UK, was given an 18-month suspended jail sentence and ordered to do 200 hours of unpaid work for the communities.
In court it was said that Martin earned £100,000 a year and cheated a system designed to protect tenants’ deposits.
He had “conned” the Deposit Protection Scheme staff into releasing tenants’ money by posing on the phone as the tenants themselves.
Martin and Seekers UK each admitted eight charges of fraud and engaging in a banned commercial practice.
Canterbury Crown Court heard that the seven victims had been vulnerable. Some had had to wait for between two to three years before being repaid the money.
One victim said in a statement read out in court: “He used his charm to cover up his lack of morals”.
The frauds took place in 2012 and 2013.
The prosecutor said that tenants on benefits had turned to Seekers UK – with offices in Ashford and Herne Bay – because other agents would not accept people on benefits.