Thursday, 3 December 2009
Crooked lawyer stole £90,000 from Midland pensioners to fund boob job and chihuahua
Nov 29 2009 by Jeanette Oldham, Sunday Mercury
IT‘S a dog more commonly associated with Hollywood stars like Paris Hilton.
But solicitor Veronica Hyland splashed out £6,000 on a pedigree Chihuahua – after stealing almost £100,000 from elderly clients.
The corrupt lawyer, 50, is now facing jail after pocketing the money which also paid for a boob reduction job, a £37,000 Audi, private schooling for her kids and a hoard of designer jewellery.
Heartless Hyland stole more than £90,000 from pensioner Doris Carrier just days after the death of her millionaire husband Les – former chairman of Wednesbury steel firm FH Lloyds.
The lawyer had doctored a legal document which allowed her to plunder the widow’s bank accounts.
Last night, a Staffordshire Police source said: “Hyland is despicable and vile. She preyed on elderly and vulnerable clients who trusted her implicitly.
‘‘She then frittered their money on egotistical luxury items, such as a breast reduction operation and a designer dog which cost £6,000.
“Her former clients are shocked and devastated.”
Hyland, of Priory Road in Stone, Staffordshire, admitted 16 counts of theft and fraud by false representation on October 12 at Stafford Crown Court.
She will be sentenced on Friday and can expect a lengthy prison sentence for the breach of trust.
Hyland was working as a wills and probate specialist at Wolverhampton solicitors Dunham Brindley and Linn when she began preying on her elderly clients in 2007.
She had access to dozens of pensioners who paid her varying sums to draw up wills and help them manage their financial affairs.
But on five separate occasions she paid clients’ cheques totalling £600 into her own bank account instead of her firm’s.
The police source said: “She would tell the client, ‘Oh, leave the cheque blank. I’ve got a stamp (bearing the firm’s name) back at the office’.
‘‘She then wrote her own name on the cheques and paid them into her account.”
Thieving Hyland also stole £470 of clients’ cash from her employer’s office in November 2007.