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After being arrested in December of last year, it appears like Jessica Harper will finally have her day in court. She is facing several allegations of fraud for falsified invoices during her time at Lloyd’s.
Jessica Harper is 50 years old and is a resident of Croydon, South London. In person, she appears much like a former football mom. Surprisingly, this unassuming figure has been charged with embezzling £2.5million. Ironically enough, Harper is the former head of the fraud division at Lloyd’s Banking Group.
During the worst of the recession, Lloyd’s Banking Group received government money to bail out their business. As a part of the stipulations of the bailout, they were required to review their financial records. As they searched through company records, a startling realization occurred. The former security chief and head of the fraud division seemed to have an unusual number of personal expenses. Invoices for these expenses were listed and indexed. When all of the numbers were added up, it appeared that Jessica Harper had wrongfully filed £2,463,750 of invoices.
The Crown Prosecution Service authorized Scotland Yard to proceed with the prosecution of Jessica Harper. As of next week, Harper will appear before the Magistrates’ Court in Westminster to face one account of fraud by abuse of position. The dates of her crime range from 2008 to 2011 during the heyday of the credit crunch and bailout mania. The Crown Prosecution Service reported that her official crime was a violation of section 1 of the 2006 Fraud Act.
Prosecutors intend to prove that Jessica Harper knowingly and dishonestly violated the law and business ethics by filing false invoices. They will attempt to demonstrate how Harper broke the law to achieve personal gain and financial wealth.
After years of slipping money undetected out of the bank, the head of fraud at Lloyd’s appears to be receiving justice. The Crown Prosecutors believe that there is a strong chance that Harper will be convicted after her Thursday appearance before the magistrates. Lloyd Banking Group has chosen not to report about the proceedings. They prefer to remain quiet so as not to prejudice the public about the upcoming trial.
Since the government-run bailout, Lloyd’s Banking group has become a company that receives 39.7 percent of its money from the state. Following the financial crisis, the government invested a great deal of monetary backing into the company in an attempt to keep it from failing.