And finally… mi casa, su casa
A tenant who tried to sell the house he was renting for £400,000 without his landlord finding out has been jailed for what police called an “almost unbelievable” crime.
Andrew Smith, 41, filled the three-bedroomed house with rented showroom furniture and faked an estate agent to list it online for sale, ITV reports.
The house appeared online for sale less than two weeks after he had received the keys.
Two potential buyers contacted the fake agents and a sale price was agreed with one of them.
In June 2022, the victim, who believed they were buying the house, visited the property with the surveyor. While they were there, the neighbours explained they thought the house was a rental and not for sale, and advised them to contact the letting agent.
The victim then contacted the police, who discovered that the documents Smith had provided to the letting agent in 2020 were fraudulent.
Mr Smith from Bedford was sentenced to a total of two years and six months in prison at Brighton Magistrates’ Court.
Det Con Dan Harper said: “This is an almost unbelievable and truly brazen crime, which saw an innocent buyer almost part with more than £400,000 for a property that was never for sale in the first place.
“The investigation has been long and detailed and we have worked tirelessly to make sure justice has been served.”