Published: 15:00, 21 July 2014 |
Updated: 16:30, 21 July 2014
A former business consultant who was jailed for three years for a massive mortgage fraud has been ordered to hand over just under £1 million.
Jean-Pierre Bestel built up a portfolio of 95 properties and applied for 31 mortgages during 2007, using forged documents and falsely claiming he was earning a six-figure salary.
He was originally found to have benefited by £9,427,123 and given six months to pay or face a further 10 years in prison. It was the largest ever confiscation by Kent Police.
The 51-year-old, formerly of City Way, Rochester, now of Killick Mill, Wrotham Road, Meopham, failed in an attempt to challenge the order - but he appealed the decision and the matter was sent back to Maidstone Crown Court to be reheard.
Recorder Cairns Nelson QC found that Bestel - who represented himself at the hearing - benefited by £3,061,699 and that his realisable assets were £969,689.
He was given six months to hand over that amount or face four years' imprisonment in default.
Judge Charles Macdonald QC said in August 2012 that Bestel's asset position remained unclear, adding: "He appears today by privately funded lawyers. He is well dressed. He has several classic cars."
Bestel told the judge he suffered from bipolar disorder, which caused "extraordinary behaviour", and that he was seeing a psychiatrist and his GP every month.
"I am still on medication every day," he said. "One of the side effects is it destroys your memory. It is something I have to deal with every day."
Every morning at 10am we play you an hour of tunes from the 90s. We call it, #WeLoveThe90s.
Play 'Say It' with Garry and Laura on kmfm Breakfast and you could win £1,000!
Wake up to kmfm Breakfast with Garry and Laura - it's Kent's alarm call.
A guide for your future. For year 11 students in Kent and Medway. Click here for the e-edition.
Education, Training & Childcare is a special supplement published by KM Media Group four times a year. Click here for latest e-edition.
This is a brand new online resource covering every aspect of owning and improving a home in Kent and Medway.
Get the latest food and drink news, recipes from some of the nation's top chefs plus updates from Kent's vineyards and breweries.
Search in your local area to find your perfect partner in Kent, with FreshStart Dating! PLUS, register for free!.
Neil Miller, Hever Castle head gardener is new gardening blogger.
Buy pictures that you've seen in a KM newspaper, or send in a picture and we will place it on our photo sales website so that you can purchase a super, unique gift.