December 15, 2020 3.52 pm This story is over 41 months old

Disgraced ex-mayor of Scunthorpe pays £150k after fraud conviction

He forged letters to access his bank account

By Local Democracy Reporter

A former North Lincolnshire mayor who was jailed for fraud in 2015 has now paid over £150,000 to the deceased victim’s family he stole from by forging legal documents.

Jawaid Ishaq, 78, of Normanby Road and originally from Kuwait, was the mayor of Scunthorpe in 2008 and even helped Queen Elizabeth II organise her first trip to a British mosque in 2002.

He was also a Labour councillor for over 30 years, the former deputy chairman of Humberside Police, and was awarded an MBE in 2000, which he has since been stripped of.

In 1997 Ishaq befriended a man called Ali Salem Sultan, who has since died, and was asked to look after two rental properties in Scunthorpe that Sultan owned while he moved back to his native Yemen.

A power of attorney document was drawn up to grant Ishaq the power to collect rent and maintain the houses, but it was discovered that Ishaq had created a handwritten forgery on another letter.

This second letter granted Ishaq access to all of Mr Sultan’s finances, including his bank accounts and pension fund.

The papers clearly stated that handover applied to ‘no other assets whatsoever’, but Ishaq had been selling Sultan’s shares and withdrawing his pension in cash every week.

Mr Sultan was in ill health at the time and had all attempts to close his account frozen by Ishaq, after he instructed the bank to ignore any letters being sent from Yemen.

A police raid on Ishaq’s house in October 2012 found the handwritten power of attorney, dated just eight days after the original was drawn up.

A successful trial in 2015 saw Jawaid Ishaq jailed for three and a half years after being convicted of five fraud charges, three theft charges and one charge of perverting the course of justice.

During the trial, the judge told Ishaq: “Throughout your trial you maintained the position that he was being cheated and stolen from by his own family. It was you all along who was the liar and the cheat.”

Since then, the victim’s estate has received over £50,000 in compensation, and the proceeds of crime act has ordered Ishaq to pay more than £139,000.

After repeatedly failing to meet the act’s deadline, he has now been ordered to pay over £12,000 in interest as well.

Senior financial investigator for Humberside Police, Lorraine Baines, said: “This is a fantastic result for the team after years of hard work to bring justice to Ishaq’s victims.

“He was a trusted member of the community in a position of power as ex-mayor of Scunthorpe, he used his position to take advantage of people in a vulnerable position.

“We will continue to hit the criminals where it hurts them – in their pocket.”