Big time fraudster says he’s broke

Paul Cope fraudster, netted over £28 million in mortgage and leasing scams. He told a judge that he is broke with no money stashed and no hidden assets. The now disgraced Stafford financier is serving a term of 64 months and is facing the confiscation of everything he owns under the Proceeds Crime Act.

At the Stafford Crown Court hearing the court was told he benefited from a fraud of £25 million plus another £3 million from a mortgage fraud that involved his home in Barn Bank Lane. Cope formally headed the finance group Kingdom a group of Stafford based companies.

He orchestrated the scheme to fraud banks and finance houses to pay for non-existent equipment for hospitals through lease agreements that were bogus. Brian Challiner and Andrew Oxlade, two other Stafford businessmen were involved as well and both have been jailed.

The court heard from Mr. James Fletcher for the Crown that some of Copes assets that total £400,000 have been agreed. But Cope was disputing tow other sums of £100,000 and £121,000 and there is also the possibility of further hidden assets. He breached a restraining order whilst on bail awaiting his trial. He was remanded to custody.

Mr. Fletcher told the court that Cope was the type who would try and hide or put out of reach assets of the Crown. He is the one that needs to persuade the court there are no more assets. When Cope gave evidence he essentially said he has nothing.

He admitted to breaching the restraining order including depositing money for a Range Rover for his wife Nicola and his children and paying £300 to the vet but he said they were done out of desperation. Asked why he spoke to an estate agent about an expensive home, he replied he was only trying to rent one.