Pair who tried to dupe planning chiefs at Brent Council fined £6k
- Credit: Archant
A Kingsbury landlord who tried to dupe planning chiefs was foiled after he submitted fake documents using a method that was created FOUR years after the dates on his forgeries.
Martin Joseph Hetherton teamed up with his surveyor and letting agent Michael Durham to carry out the audacious scam that aimed to trick Brent Council into granting planning permission for a studio flat at 67 Church Lane.
The pair submitted fake tenancy agreements to show the property had been rented out for more than four years since 2008 so was lawful.
However they used ‘Law Pack Forms’ to create the documents – four years before they were made available in England.
This showed the ‘agreements’ dated 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011 were forgeries.
Both appeared at Willesden Magistrates’ Court where they admitted submitting forged tenancy agreements and were fined £3,000 each and ordered to pay costs of £2,286.
Durham, a surveyor for 30 years, has been forced to resign following his conviction.
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Cllr Margaret McLennan, Brent Council’s lead member for regeneration and housing, said: “Professional misconduct such as this is unacceptable.
“Planning rules are in place for a reason and those who ignore them run the risk of not just receiving hefty fines but of having their professional reputations ruined too.”