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Solicitor and former Gloucestershire Coroner Sentenced for £2m fraud

28/11/2013

Alan Crickmore, a solicitor and former coroner for Gloucestershire, has today been sentenced to a total of eight years in prison after pleading guilty to 16 counts of theft and eight counts of fraud at Southwark Crown Court last month.

Jane Mitchell, specialist fraud lawyer for the Crown Prosecution Service, said: "For a period of 13 years between 1998 and 2011, Alan Crickmore abused his position to systematically steal from and defraud his clients in order to fund an extravagant lifestyle he plainly could not legitimately afford. It is no coincidence that his largest money transfers took place directly before the cruises he went on with his wife.

"Alan Crickmore chose his victims carefully, usually targeting the elderly and infirm. He often stole from vulnerable clients living in nursing facilities or plundered the estates of deceased clients whose wills he had drawn up and been appointed executor. In one such instance, Alan Crickmore not only withheld funds that were bequeathed to a client's brother in Poland, but in order to keep his fraud a secret, he failed even to notify the rightful recipient of his brother's death.

"As his offending spiralled out of control, his web of lies began to unravel, and he found himself stealing from one client to conceal shortfalls he had created by earlier thefts.

"The victims and their families placed their complete faith and trust in Alan Crickmore and his betrayal of that trust was flagrant and brutal.

"It is a testament to the strength of the case that the investigators and the legal team were able to build that Alan Crickmore had no choice but to plead guilty to 24 of the 25 counts on the indictment."

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 four national casework divisions: Central Fraud, Welfare Rural & Health, Special Crime & Counter Terrorism and Organised Crime. A 'virtual' 14th Area is CPS Direct 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 2013 we employed a workforce of approximately 6840 staff (full time equivalent), including around 2350 prosecutors and 4110 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.