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CPS Proceeds of Crime

When the trial is over and the offender convicted, specialist lawyers in Crown Prosecution Service Proceeds of Crime (CPSPOC) - along with other criminal justice agencies - go after any ill-gotten gains.

CPSPOC has three main offices around the country and plays a key role in recovering millions of pounds each year.

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The Role of The Crown Prosecution Service

The Crown Prosecution Service is the government department responsible for prosecuting criminal cases investigated by the police in England and Wales.

As the principal prosecuting authority in England and Wales, we are responsible for:

  • advising the police on cases for possible prosecution
  • reviewing cases submitted by the police
  • determining any charges in more serious or complex cases
  • preparing cases for court
  • presenting cases at court

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Man sentenced for stealing over £350,000 from elderly and vulnerable victims

18/08/2015

A former financial advisor has been sentenced today to six years for dishonest conduct in managing the finances of four elderly and vulnerable people, Preston Crown Court heard.

Peter Bottomley, from Morecambe, was an authorised Independent Financial Advisor until 2003. Despite his authorisation to be an Independent Financial Advisor ceasing, he continued to manage the finances of some elderly people who later went on to reside in local care homes, often with no next of kin. He took advantage of his victims to steal enormous amounts of money for his own personal gain - a total of £356,883.16.

The investigation into Peter Bottomley's criminality started with one victim with cerebral palsy, from whom he stole £103,646.48. The investigation then revealed Peter Bottomley had tricked a number of other people in the same way and created wills which would have been to his benefit.

Elizabeth Jenkins, Deputy Head of the Specialist Fraud Division at the CPS, said: "To steal money from anyone is unacceptable, but to steal the life savings of the vulnerable and the elderly is particularly cruel and calculating.

"The strength of our evidence was such that Peter Bottomley had no choice but to plead guilty which spared the victims from a potentially lengthy trial.

"It was clear that Peter Bottomley selected his victims because he thought their age, and in one case their cerebral palsy, made them easy targets. We asked the court to reflect the pernicious way in which he targeted these vulnerable victims in its sentencing.

"Crimes like this should not pay and we have already succeeded in restraining £1.3m worth of Peter Bottomley's assets. We'll now continue to work hard to ensure this money is recovered and his victims are compensated."

Background

CPS guidance refers to a "vulnerable" victim or person in the context of the person being vulnerable to a criminal offence at a particular time, or in the context of a relevant Sentencing Guideline. The guidance does not suggest that a disabled person is vulnerable per-se. 

Ends

Notes to Editors

  1. For media enquiries call the CPS Press Office on 020 3357 0906; Out of Hours Pager 07699 781 926
  2. The CPS consists of 13 Areas in total, each headed by a Chief Crown Prosecutor (CCP). In addition, there are three national casework divisions: Specialist Fraud (formerly Central Fraud and Welfare, Rural & Health Divisions), Special Crime & Counter Terrorism and Organised Crime. CPS Direct is a 'virtual' 14th Area which provides charging decisions to all police forces and other investigators across England and Wales - it operates twenty-four hours, seven days a week, 365 days a year.
  3. At 31 March 2014 we employed a workforce of approximately 6237 staff (full time equivalent), including around 2226 prosecutors and 3629 caseworkers and administrators. Further information can be found on our website:  www.cps.gov.uk.
  4. The CPS, together with ACPO and media representatives, has developed a Protocol for the release of prosecution material to the media. This sets out the type of prosecution material that will normally be released, or considered for release, together with the factors we will take into account when considering requests. Read the Protocol for the release of prosecution material to the media.