Achilleas Kallakis

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Achilleas Michalis Kallakis (born Stefanos Kollakis on 3 September 1968) is responsible for the UK's largest ever mortgage fraud, of over £760 million, and has been called "Britain's most successful serial confidence trickster".[1]

Early life and family

Kollakis was born in Ealing,[2] west London, on 3 September 1968.[3] His father was a port captain and once ran an unsuccessful nightclub in Liverpool. The family lived in Ealing. He is the nephew of shipping magnate Lou Kollakis.[4] He attended the University of Buckingham where he met his future partner in crime Martin Lewis.[1]

In 1995, Kollakis married Pamela A. Stachowsky in Ealing.[5][6]

Criminal career

Kollakis once worked as a travel agent in Croydon. His first conviction for fraud was for the sale of bogus manorial titles to Americans in the early 1990s with his conspirator Martin Lewis. After their conviction, Kollakis changed his name to Achilleas Kallakis and Lewis to Alexander Martin Williams.[1][4]

In the early 2000s, Kallakis and Williams began a new fraud, using various aliases, offshore trusts and fake references to borrow large sums of money to buy prime London properties, often for more than they were worth. He bought buildings let to the British Home Office in Croydon and the headquarters of the Telegraph Media Group at 111 Buckingham Palace Road in Victoria, which he purchased from the Barclay brothers in 2007.[1][5][7]

He owned 31 Brompton Square, bought in the mid-2000s for £28 million, and had the entire garden dug out to a depth of 30 feet to build a three-storey basement. The project was abandoned in 2008. As of 2017, it is for sale at £25 million.[8]

Kallakis lived a luxurious lifestyle, gambling in London's casinos and owning several cars, including a Bentley Azure, another Bentley, a Ferrari Scaglietti and a Mercedes.[5] He falsely claimed to be an "ambassador for the Republic of San Marino" and the author of Maritime Registries of the World and The Wonders of Italy, and to serve on a committee of the National Portrait Gallery in London.[1][9]

The fraud began to be discovered in 2008 when a German bank did some background checks on Kallakis after Allied Irish Banks attempted to sell some of the loans it had made to him.[1] In 2013, he was sentenced to seven years imprisonment and Williams to five for defrauding the Bank of Scotland, AIB and other lenders.[10]

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f Bowers, Simon; Hickey, Shane (16 January 2013). "Confidence trickster who defrauded banks out of £750m faces jail". Retrieved 27 September 2017 – via www.theguardian.com. 
  2. ^ Stefan Michalis Kollakis England and Wales Birth Registration Index. Family Search. Retrieved 28 September 2017.
  3. ^ Achilleas Michalis KALLAKIS. Companies House. Retrieved 28 September 2017.
  4. ^ a b Reuters (29 April 1995). "Selling Fake Titles A Most Ignoble Crime". SFGate. Retrieved 28 September 2017. 
  5. ^ a b c "Tycoon accused of £750m fraud 'planned super-yacht'". The Irish Times. 27 October 2011. Retrieved 27 September 2017. 
  6. ^ Stefanos M Kollakis mentioned in the record of Stachowsky and Stefanos M Kollakis. Family Search. Retrieved 28 September 2017.
  7. ^ Telegraph’s Victoria HQ in £200m sale. Joanna Bourke, EGi, 3 September 2014. Retrieved 30 October 2017.
  8. ^ "Huge chasm dubbed 'black hole of Brompton' could be filled in". standard.co.uk. Retrieved 4 October 2017. 
  9. ^ Achilleas Michalis Kallakis. Debrett's, 16 January 2013. Archived at archive.org Retrieved 28 September 2017.
  10. ^ "Achilleas Kallakis case: judge criticises banks who loaned money". Parikiaki. 19 January 2013. Retrieved 30 October 2017. 
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