Former mortgage adviser given 18 month suspended sentence

Simon Robert Gray, who is 41-years-old and from Bury St Edmunds in Suffolk, was sentenced to 18 weeks' imprisonment, suspended for 18 months, for making misleading statements and using forged documents in repeated applications to become an FSA approved person.

In passing sentence, Deputy District Judge Malins said Gray's offences involved "sustained dishonesty", there was "no question that custody was appropriate" and that these were "absolutely disgraceful" offences.

This is the first time the FSA has prosecuted an individual for providing false information in an application for approval or authorisation.

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Graeme Ashley Fenn, director of permissions, decisions and reporting at the FSA said: "Gray's actions were dishonest and a deliberate attempt to undermine the FSA’s approval process.

"Our action in this case should deter others from distorting the truth when applying for authorisation and help protect consumers from the risk of being given unsuitable advice."

Gray has also been ordered to pay £750 towards the FSA’s costs and will be supervised by the probation service for 18 months.

Gray was previously an adviser for Ipswich-based Direct Mortgages Consortium Ltd and Bury St Edmunds-based Direct Mortgages between 31 October 2004 and 20 April 2007.

He also was an appointed representative of Personal Touch Financial Services Ltd between 31 October 2004 and 20 April 2007.