Trustee in £60,000 inheritance fraud is jailed

Posted Jul 30, 2019.


A trustee who faked his wife’s signature to illegally transfer thousands of pounds of his stepson’s inheritance to himself is now facing 3 years and 8 months in prison.

The culprit, highly regarded former Royal Navy officer Iain Shepherd, was a trustee for his stepson’s inheritance fund from his wife Mary.  His stepson, Joshua Powell, was ten years old when Shepherd faked his wife’s signature to set up a secret bank account, which he then used to make a number of cash transfers from the inheritance fund. Between 2006 and 2010, the retired officer and holder of an MBE transferred £58,895 into this account for his own personal use, leaving the fund containing less than £25,000.

Inheritance to be partly repaid

Shepherd, 56, of Bognor Regis in West Sussex who had been awarded an MBE in 2015 for services to European maritime strategy, was finally caught in 2017. As well as the jail sentence, Portsmouth Crown Court also ordered the Falklands veteran to repay £19,497. Following the trial and sentencing, his wife Mary said:

“He is a disgrace to the Armed Forces, a disgrace to the Navy and should be stripped of his MBE immediately”

Stepson Joshua Powell, who had been planning on using the inheritance to support him through his university years, added:

“(He is) a despicable apology of a man…I’m glad he’s going to prison, it took long enough”

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