Alleged fraudster in court for ‘stealing Hampstead woman’s home’

The Hampstead house which is the subject of the alleged fraud. Picture: Nigel Sutton

The Hampstead house which is the subject of the alleged fraud. Picture: Nigel Sutton - Credit: Nigel Sutton

An alleged fraudster is to stand trial in an extraordinary case that has seen him accused of a stealing a woman’s home from right under her nose.

The unusual charge, involving accusations of forged signatures and land registry documents, has seen a resident allegedly discover her home on the edge of Hampstead Heath “stolen” and re-mortgaged again.

The valuable flat, in North End Way, Hampstead, is in a prime location overlooking the sprawling open space of Golders Hill Park, where houses can be sold for millions of pounds.

Tony Trivett, of Milton Road, Brentwood, Essex, is accused of committing the audacious fraud and abusing his position as a financial advisor to the owner of the home, Rosemary Straker.

Over a two-month period, from December 2013, the 47-year-old is alleged to have forged Ms Straker’s signature in letters to his solicitors as well as in land registry documents and in a contract stipulating the sale of the home.

The spate of alleged frauds has seen him also charged with “acquiring criminal property”, namely the home itself.

Mr Trivett pleaded not guilty to all counts when appearing at Blackfriars Crown Court on Tuesday, and is set to stand trial in February next year.

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The court heard how handwriting experts had been ordered to provide evidence and that a civil case was also taking place alongside, to be heard in November.

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