The lawyer, the fraud and the fake OBE application

Lawyer, crime writer and former love interest of Sir Michael Caine’s daughter Nathan ‘Andy’ Iyer was jailed for four years yesterday for stealing nearly £3m from his firm and its clients through a scheme involving fictitious companies and false invoices.

When The Lawyer attended Iyer’s Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal hearing in February 2012, where he was struck off, the panel described his crimes as “as bad a case of fraud that the tribunal has ever had to deal with”. Perhaps they hadn’t heard the whole story.

Today it has emerged that on top of Iyer’s four year sentence for defrauding his firm and clients, an extra eight months was tacked on to his stretch for “attempting to obtain an OBE by faking letters hailing him as a cancer charity hero”.

Yep, you read that right. Not content with spending his ill-gotten gains on cars, houses and a racing yacht, Iyer wrote letters under the pseudonym of Elizabeth Herring, praising and recommending himself for an OBE nominated within the field of health and social care. Iyer then sent supporting letters to the Cabinet Office under more aliases, including that of a non-existent cancer sufferer.

Iyer tried to say that he was doing this because he was writing a book about how easy it was to falsely obtain an OBE under the honours system, but he couldn’t provide any evidence to support this and eventually pleaded guilty to all charges against him at the City of London Magistrates Court in November 2012.

Unlike Iyer, you couldn’t make it up.

PS The Lawyer’s sister magazine Lawyer 2B is holding a ‘Law for Non-Law’ careers evening on 20 February in association with the College of Law. It is an event designed specifically to guide and engage with students who have not studied a law degree but wish to pursue a career in law. For further details click here.

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