Scam alert round up

Here are the most recent scam alerts issued by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).

Emails from a Tim Fitcher claiming to be a Solicitor

The SRA have been informed of emails sent out int he name of Tim Fitcher, Partner, claiming to be a Solicitor. The email states “kindly find attached new lease contract for your attention”.

The emails come from an address “[email protected], list telephone numbers +44 (0)20 3400 2356; +44 (0)20 3499 1000 and +44 (0)7710 371 905, and other contact details including “[email protected]” and “www.timlawyerslaw.com”

The emails also include an SRA number for Andrew Brook Solicitors however Andrew Brook Solicitors state they have no connection with the emails.

The SRA state they do not regulate any such Tim Fletcher.

Email claiming to be from a “Quentin Poole” of Wragge Lawrence Graham & Co LLP

Member sof the public have reported reeiving emails from a “Quentin Poole” of Wragge lawrence graham & Co LLP. The email requests personal data and a signature on a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to become known as the beneficiary. The email states, “The funds will be invested into a community development project as stated clearly in the MOU” and goes on to provide further details and refer to funds being transferred to Bangladesh.

While the firm is genuine and employ a Jeremy Quentin Poole, both say they have no connection with the emails in question.

Emails using the name and address of Bates Wells & Braithwaite London LLP

A member of the public has reported receiving an email claiming to be from Bate sWells & Braithwaite in relation to an immigration matter. The email requests a transfer of £997.00 to an account under the name of Carlos Townsend.

The email from an address “[email protected]” list an address of 10 Queen Street Place, London, EC4R 1BE and a phone number “+447700023677”

Whilst the firm is genuine, and Robert Houchill is a former employee, both state they are not connected with the emails.

Letters from Powell Chambers Solicitors

Members of the public have reported receiving letters claiming to be from “Rony Lam “/ “Abid Hussain” of Powell Chambers Solicitors, about an unclaimed inheritance from a previously unknown relative. The letter states it is from “Barrister Rony Lam – Solicitor at Law” but is signed as if sent by “Barr Abid Hussain”.

The documents seen by the SRA invite the recipients to contact the writer in order to make a claim, through the email address: [email protected]

They also reference to a website address of: http://powellchamberswebonline.com, a contact telephone number of +44 7978 353172 and a fax number of +44 121 2268938

it also lists two contact addresses, one in Oldham and one in Rotherham. The Oldham address set out is that of a genuine firm of solicitors Equity Law Chambers. The other contact address used is 11 Mansfield Road, Rotherham South Yorkshire S60 2DR, which is a former branch office for the genuine firm.

The SRA does not regulate or authorise a firm called Powell Chambers Solicitors or an individual by the given name of “Rony Lam”.

While Equity Law Chambers is a genuine firm who employ an Abid Hussain, they state they are not connected with the letters.

What to do

When a firm’s or individual’s identity has been copied or cloned, due diligence is necessary. If you receive correspondence claiming to be from the above firms or individuals, or information of a similar nature to that described, you should conduct your own due diligence by checking the authenticity of the correspondence by contacting the law firm directly by reliable and established means.

You can contact the SRA to find out if individuals or firms are regulated and authorised by the SRA and verify an individual’s or firm’s practising details. Other verification methods, such as checking public records may be required in other circumstances.

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