More details have emerged about the letting agency director sentenced this week after stealing from tenants and landlords.
Via his company Paris Lettings, Peter Bell, 36, ran a franchised outlet of Enfields, in Northampton. This Monday, he was sentenced to jail, while his ex-girlfriend Rebecca Kirton was given a suspended sentence.
Bell had pleaded guilty to 11 charges of theft and four of fraud.
Northamptonshire police have now revealed that Bell defrauded clients to fund a lavish lifestyle which included holidays, meals out, and shopping.
Funds were diverted from the company client account to pay for an expensive rental property, lease cars and foreign holidays including a trip to the Monaco Grand Prix.
Police say that money from the account was also used to cover the cost of company credit cards which were “regularly used to pay for meals at restaurants and shopping trips to Harrods, Zara, Debenhams and Anne Summers”.
Police say: “Although the exact amount of money stolen was disputed by the defence, a figure of £92,000 was accepted at the hearing on Monday.”
Police have also clarified that Bell was sentenced to three years and three months, but that the judge reduced the sentence to two years and two months, to take into account credit given for early admissions made during police interviews. As we reported yesterday, he will serve 26 months.
DC Paul Houghton-Draeger, who led the investigation, said: “This outcome is the result of a lengthy and complex investigation involving a large number of victims who have lost substantial amounts of money through the dishonest actions of someone they had placed their trust in.
“Mr Bell’s behaviour represents a massive betrayal of that trust and it is hoped that this result will go some way to making things right.
“In the meantime, the investigation continues and efforts are ongoing to recover some of that money and compensate those who have lost money through their dealings with Mr Bell and his company.”