There has been an interesting and shocking case in the press lately detailing how a man from Hull stole more than £60,000 from his dead neighbour after impersonating him for over 2 years.
Mr Thompson (who unofficially cared for his friend – Mr Traylen) telephoned Mr Traylen’s bank following his death and pretended to be him.
Mr Thompson told the bank that he was “very ill” and that he wanted money transferred from his savings into his current account so he could “sort out his funds”. But after getting the first payment of £28,000 he then wrote himself a cheque for £25,000.
2 years later he contacted the bank again, this time getting £30,000 of uncashed bonds and transferring them to his own account. His fraud only came to light when Mr Traylen’s sister came forward to claim his estate.
Mr Thompson has now appeared at Hull Crown Court where he admitted 5 counts of fraud by false representation and one count of theft. he was sentenced to 2 years in jail after being told his actions were “sophisticated” and an abuse of trust.
The court was told how Thompson, had been unofficially caring for his 78-year-old neighbour Mr Traylen for almost 20 years. Mr Traylen did not have any known relatives or beneficiaries to his estate when he died on 2 October 2017.
Thompson used the money for general expenses over the next 2 years and he continued to withdraw a further £6,367 using Mr Traylen’s debit card.
In October 2019, again impersonating Mr Traylen, Mr Thompson accessed a further £30,000 of uncashed bonds and transferred them into his own account. However his offending came to light shortly afterwards.
In November 2019, Mr Traylen’s sister (who lived in New Zealand), came forward to claim his estate. She appointed a solicitor in the UK to liquidate the property, which unearthed Mr Thompson’s fraud.
A total of £61,356.25 was taken from Mr Traylen’s accounts. In a police interview, Thompson claimed the money had been a gift from Mr Traylen, but later fully admitted to the offences.
This case highlights the vital importance of having a will in place.
We can come to you, in the privacy and convenience of your own home, to discuss Wills, Trusts and Lasting Powers of Attorney. We will explain why they are important and suggest ways that you can put steps in place to give you peace of mind for the future.
By drafting a Will, Lasting Powers of Attorney or setting up Trusts, not only will your wishes be carried out as you would like but you can also protect your family and friends from costly and stressful legal disputes.