FRAUDSTER Nigel Lelliott has had his entire assets seized by police after he defraudedg a disabled teenager out of £100,000.
Lelliott, 48, of Twickenham Close, befriended the youngster in 2009 after a traffic accident as a child had left him with a sizeable compensation claim.
He proceeded to squeeze thousands of pounds out of the vulnerable teen by setting up realistic property development opportunities, but after receiving his investment splurged the cash on expensive cars, holidays and artwork.
In December Lelliott was convicted of five counts of fraud and theft, and has now been ordered to pay back £8,000 of the £100,000 of ill-gotten gains while he serves four years behind bars. The overall debt will hang over his head after his release from prison.
Following a confiscation order provided by the courts, Lelliott’s remaining assets were seized, with the exception of money already spent. They included artwork worth thousands of pounds by painters including Fabio Perez and Victor Colenicenco aka Nemo.
The haul will now be auctioned off with the funds raised going to repay Lelliott’s victim.
Maria Delapp, financial investigator with Wiltshire Police, based in the complex fraud unit, said the team would continue to pursue Lelliott for the remainder of the funds owed.
“Unfortunately in this case no cash was seized because he had spent all the money,” she said. “This is only a small part of what he did spend, and all these items were not found in the same place.
“We identified any legitimate income he might have, which in this case he had none. That meant all the money he had going into his bank account during this three year period was from the victim. Any possessions he did have had come from the proceeds of crime.”
The artwork, with accompanying certificates of authenticity, were located in seperate addresses, and the £20,000 BMW bought by Lelliott had been sold on, with the money spent on lavish holidays.
“Some of it was found at the address he was living in at the time,” said Maria. “Other items had been stored at relative’s houses. They were all very co-operative.
“The BMW was sold and that money was spent. He had gone on lots of nice holidays, he had afternoon tea at Harrods, went to the rugby world cup and South African cruises. He liked designer jewellery and expensive watches. Some of it I think was in a place where they might not be able to be found.
“The most expensive item when priced was a painting worth about £3,000. But the holidays are probably the most expensive outlay. We are hoping the realisable income from auctioning these off will be around £8,000, but they will now have to be collected by the auction houses and sent to the most appropriate rooms.
“The benefit figure of £100,000 will stay with Lelliott, so that debt will hang over his head until it is repaid, and if we can identify any further assets we will be taking this back to court.
“Whenever possible, even if it is quite a small amount, we will seek to recover those assets and compensate the victim.
“Any person who benefits from criminality in Wiltshire must expect every effort will be made to ensure that they do not benefit. Crime simply does not pay.”
Lelliott’s family have distanced themselves from him since they realised where the money he was throwing around had come from.
Danielle McDavitt, Lelliott’s daughter-in-law, has said: “We are not going to miss him in the slightest, and the kids are not going to miss him. We are all quite glad he has been arrested and gone to prison, because he has got away with it up until now.
“We have been told he smirked and winked when he was sentenced, which just sums him up.
“Nigel was always flash with his money, which we now know wasn’t his.”
Lelliott had ten previous convictions of dishonesty, 65 offences of similar matters, and has been declared bankrupt twice.
The rise and fall of a devious fraudster
Early 2009: Lelliott lured a teenager to invest in buying a property in Emerson Close, with a view to renovate and split profits 50/50.
Early 2009: Lelliott devises second scheme for the teenager to front a mortgage for land in Station Road, promising to build a house to sell on.
Early 2009: The youth transfers more than £60,000 into Lelliott’s account before series of staggered payments, totalling more than £100,000 altogether.
Summer 2009: Lelliott spends £5,000 on laying the foundations for his project in Station Road before going on a spending spree with the young man’s money.
13 February 2013: Lelliott appears in court charged with fraud.
17 December 2013: Lelliott sentenced to four years in prison on five counts of fraud and thatf following trial at Taunton Crown Court.
January 2014: Lelliott’s family distance themselves from the fraudster and hit back at mitigation claims he had been acting as sole carer for his children.
29 April 2014: Proceeds of crime hearing held into Lelliott’s activity.
4 July 2014: Confiscation hearing held at Gloucester Crown Court.
July 2014: Lelliott ordered to pay back initial sum of £8,000 and seized property auctioned off to repay the teenager his lost funds.