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Fraudster sold house which did not belong to him, court told
A fraudster will spend three-and-a-half years behind bars after selling a house which he did not even own for £750,000.
Under the false name of Ian Mathewson, Sean McGowan tricked solicitors, estate agents and a bank into believing the derelict property was his to sell.
But it was all a con, and McGowan, 43, of New Cottages, Partridge Green, was caught out when the real owner found out his house had been sold.
When he appeared at the Old Bailey, McGowan was jailed for fraud.
He had previously admitted selling the house in Chobham Road, Sunningdale, Berkshire, to an “unwitting” property developer.
The court was told he used forged identification to trick people.
Thames Valley Police said he was traced by officers to his home in Sussex and was arrested in July 2011, at which time he made “certain admission”
to the part he played in the fraud.
Detective Sergeant Nick Bell, from the Thames Valley Police economic crime unit, praised the quick work of Detective Constable Richard Bates and added: “He acted immediately to ensure the funds were secured and recovered.
“He has done an excellent job, with a prompt and effective investigation, to bring McGowan to justice and minimise the loss.”
All of the money was recovered except £20,000, which McGowan had spent.