A struck off Midland solicitor who earned hefty commissions while running an unlicensed mortgage brokerage business has been jailed for eight months at Birmingham Crown Court.
Passing sentence Deputy Circuit Judge Peter Stretton told Peter Collinson: “You were formerly a solicitor. You knew what the rules and regulations were and you disregarded them blatantly. Having been refused a licence you carried on.”
The judge said he accepted no-one had lost any money as a result of his activities but said: “They are serious matters because the regulations are there to prevent the danger of other people losing money.”
Collinson, 55, of The Meadows, Nottingham, had admitted three charges under the Consumer Credit Act and six of obtaining money transfer by deception.
Peter Travers, prosecuting, said Collinson had been a solicitor but was struck off for matters involving “financial impropriety”.
Following the end of his law career in 2004 Collinson, who had acted as a solicitor in Tamworth and Nuneaton, moved into mortgage advice operating first as Perfect Mortgage Loans Ltd, then Money Supply Ltd.
He applied to the Office for Fair Trading for a consumer credit licence but was refused.
However he still continued to operate as a mortgage arranger, changing the name of the company on several occasions.
Mr Travers said he was earning commission and brokerage fees and by operating without a licence he was “playing fast and loose with the clients’ money” exposing them to risk.
He said the case had been investigated by Birmingham City Council’s illegal money lending team and Collinson had received over £8,000 in fees and commission while operating illegally.
Andrew Fisher, defending, said, although the Law Society had intervened in his practice Collinson had not faced any prosecution as a result.
He said Collinson had initially operated legitimately working for others and had then set up his own limited company.