Crooked financier syphoned £90k from the accounts of a trusting Lancashire pensioner

Preston Crown Court
Preston Crown Court
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A crooked financial adviser who swindled a trusting Lancashire pensioner out of more than £90,000 has been ordered to pay back £16,457.

Iain Sarvent, 47, acted as power of attorney – a position enabling a third party to make financial transactions on behalf of someone who is mentally incapacitated – to syphon the accounts of the 68-year-old Garstang woman, Preston Crown Court heard.

But the woman, whom he befriended in the 1980s, was capable of making financial decisions for herself.

A Proceeds of Crime hearing found he had benefitted to the tune of £175,530 from his crimes.

However, prosecutor Peter Horgan told the hearing, he only had £16,457 in realisable assets - which he must now pay as compensation to the pensioner.

A previous hearing was told he used her life savings to buy himself a £26,000 BMW 355D Sports car, put a roof over his own head, house members of his family and set up an estate agency with his wife.

Sarvent, of Westfield Crescent, Doncaster, is already serving three years and eight months behind bars after admitting theft and three counts of fraud last June.

He had met the woman when he worked as a cashier in a building society in Pontefract in the 1980s.

She continued to turn to Sarvent for financial advice. From 2009 to 2013 he advised her to make a number of investments on the property market, taking out mortgages and securing funding against her assets.

His sentencing heard he had debts totalling more than £50,000.

The pensioner, who was mortgage free, now has a mortgage against her home and has lost the money she saved for a comfortable retirement.