Senior surveyor in £10m mortgage scam

The jury at the Old Bailey has heard about the part a senior surveyor who is married to a police officer is said to have played in a £10m mortgage scam, and received money and cars as her reward. Mary Jane Rathie is said to have deliberately overvalued 5 upmarket properties in London for a woman called Joanne Pier, and received money transfers and cheques totalling £900,000, as well as a Range Rover Sport and a Bentley Continental.

The cars have a combined value of just under £200,000, and were both registered to Rathie’s husband David, an officer in the Metropolitan force. Pier, who has since disappeared, used the false valuations to obtain mortgages worth £10m from the Royal Bank of Scotland, of which £9.5m was dependent on Rathie’s valuations.

Rathie, from Waltham Cross in Hertfordshire, denies the five charges of fraud that were alleged to have taken place between May 2007 and June 2009. Both she and her husband also deny a charge of concealing criminal property. Rathie worked for Ashdown Lyons in Finchley in North London, and her RICS membership was suspended for a year in November. She first met Pier in 2007 when she went to Ashdown Lyons with a list of properties she wanted valued.

The court heard that in June 2007, Rathie, who had married in the May, told her employers about Pier offering her £100,000 as a wedding gift. This was twice her annual salary, but said that she had declined the gift. The prosecutor said that at the time she was in the financial position to refuse such a present, but only 6 months later her position had changed dramatically.