Judges accused of £12.6m legal aid scam appear in court


Westminster Magistrates’ Court: First court appearance

Three judges and six other lawyers arrested over an alleged plot to scam £12.6m from the legal aid system have appeared in court.

Part-time immigration judges Kareena Maciel, 46, and Rasib Ghaffar, 48, along with part-time civil judge Razi Shah are accused of making claims in excess of £12.6m.

The others charged are legal clerk Gazi Khan, 49, barrister Shahid Rashid, 57 and solicitors Joseph Ameyaw-Kyeremeh, 67, Azhar Khan, 46, Lloyd Moody, 48 and Samira Bashir, 46.

Gazi Khan stood up and claimed the case was a “racist witch hunt”, adding: “It will all come out.”

Prosecutor Joe Bird told Westminster Magistrates’ Court earlier this week: “They are all linked together – different firms, different costs but there’s a common thread between them.

“The claims were for work not done or grossly inflated. They suggested the work had taken far longer than it did. It all came to light after the claims were queried.”

Ms Maciel and Mr Ghaffar, both of South Woodford, Mr Shah, of Windsor, Berkshire, and Mr Ameyaw-Kyeremeh, of Croydon, all deny one count of conspiracy to commit an offence of fraud by false representation.

Gazi Khan, of Isleworth, west London, Rashid, of Langley, Berkshire, denies three counts of the same charge.

Azhar Khan, of Pinner, Middlesex, denies one count of fraud by false representation and one count of conspiracy to commit an offence of fraud by false representation.

Mr Moody, of Surbiton, Surrey, denies two counts of fraud by false representation.

Ms Bashir, of Slough, faces one count of fraud by false representation and appeared in court separately.

All were bailed and will appear at Southwark Crown Court for a plea and trial preparation hearing on 14 August.




Leave a Comment

By clicking Submit you consent to Legal Futures storing your personal data and confirm you have read our Privacy Policy and section 5 of our Terms & Conditions which deals with user-generated content. All comments will be moderated before posting.

Required fields are marked *
Email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Reports

No larger firm can ignore the demands of innovation – that was the clear message from our most recent roundtable: “The law firm of the future”, sponsored by LexisNexis Enterprise Solutions. It comes in many forms, predominantly but not just technology, and is not simply a case of automating process. Expertise and process are not mutually exclusive.

Blog

16 November 2018

Transparency is about a lot more than just price

The transparency agenda is much more than the figures you put on your website; it all comes back to communication, the root of so many lawyers’ problems if you look at the types of complaint that go to the Legal Ombudsman.

Read More