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Letting agent dodges prison sentence after admitting £30,000 fraud

A former letting agent has received a suspended prison sentence after pleading guilty to ten counts of fraud.

Nicholas Dowse, also known as Nick Harmsworth, was sentenced last week after admitting to pocketing almost £30,000 of landlords and tenants' money.

Between April 2012 and September 2013, while running Harmsworth Estate Agents in Portsmouth, Dowse withheld £1,430 of tenants' deposits, £15,251 of rent and £13,206 of service charges.


The agent reportedly withdrew the funds from his business to fund extravagant holidays to Las Vegas and Egypt.

While Dowse and his wife were away, employees of the agency were left to deal with unpaid bills and an outstanding £4,000 water bill, according to prosecutor David Reid.

Dowse reportedly lied to employees that they had been paid and also told staff to lie to landlords and tenants that he was ill rather than on holiday.

Judge Roger Hetherington commented: "You abused your position by defrauding clients in the main who were landlords of properties."

Dowse was sentenced at Portsmouth Crown Court to 21 months in prison, suspended for two years.

He has been ordered to pay £1,200 in prosecution costs with a victim surcharge of £100 and complete 200 hours of unpaid community work.

*Graham Norwood is away on annual leave until June 4th. Conor Shilling will be undertaking editorial duties in his absence. Please send any press enquiries to press@lettingagenttoday.co.uk

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    So what about repaying what he stole, proceeds of crime and all that. Sell his house and pay back what he took and then we pray he get shafted by another rogue letting agent.


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