HBOS £35m business loans probe: Tenth person charged

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A 10th person has been charged in connection with a probe into business loans of up to £35m made through a high street bank.

Jonathan Cohen, 54, of Dovecote Close, Pinner, north-west London, is accused of fraudulent trading and conspiracy to conceal criminal property.

He was bailed to appear at Reading Magistrates' Court on 25 September.

The loans allegedly came from a Halifax Bank of Scotland (HBOS) branch in Reading.

The others charged include former senior managers at HBOS, Lynden Scourfield, 51, and Mark Dobson, 52.

David Mills, 56, and Michael Bancroft, 70, of Quayside Corporate Services, a consultancy firm, have also been charged, along with former solicitor Roger Hawes, 52, and a seventh man, John Cartwright, 68.

The other defendants are three of the men's wives, Jacqueline Scourfield, 51, Alison Mills, 48, and Beverley Bancroft, 65.

A number of the alleged offences originated from HBOS's Impaired Assets team based at the Reading branch.

Mr Scourfield and Mr Dobson were senior managers based at Reading and Bishopsgate, the Crown Prosecution Service has said.

The nine defendants are due to appear at Southwark Crown Court on 3 October.

The charges are:

  • Lynden Scourfield, of Whitton Avenue West, Greenford, west London, is charged with one count of conspiracy to corrupt, three counts of fraudulent trading, one count of money laundering and one count of blackmail.
  • Mark Dobson, of Brayfield Terrace, London, is charged with one count of conspiracy to corrupt.
  • David Mills, of Todenham, Moreton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire, is charged with one count of conspiracy to corrupt, three counts of fraudulent trading and one count of money laundering.
  • Michael Bancroft, of Ilmington, Shipston-on-Stour, Warwickshire, is charged with one count of conspiracy to corrupt, three counts of fraudulent trading and one count of money laundering.
  • Roger Hawes, of Front Street, Churchill, Winscombe, North Somerset, is charged with one count of facilitating the acquisition, retention, use or control of criminal property and one of conspiracy to transfer criminal property.
  • John Cartwright, of Knott Lane, Hyde, Cheshire, is charged with one count of fraudulent trading.
  • Jacqueline Scourfield, Alison Mills and Beverley Bancroft are each charged with one count of money laundering.

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