APS Legal & Associates

Care Home Theft from the Vulnerable

Care Home Boss Convicted After Stealing Millions From Pensioners.

I saw this article and not only did it stand out because of what I do, but it happened in Southport where I lived for many happy years and where I still return regularly to see my father. Could due diligence on the care home and its owners have helped ? Well they got away with the scam for 18 yrs so it’s unlikely. When it comes to “outsiders” though trying to worm their way into the inheritance of vulnerable relatives then the alarm bells need to start ringing. Always, always take advice from trusted, established professionals because when it comes down to money even the most unlikely people could be taking you and your family to the cleaners !

“A care home boss in Southport has been convicted of multiple frauds after stealing millions of pounds from elderly residents. David Barton Senior has now been jailed for 21 years following the longest trial in the history of Liverpool Crown Court.

The trial, which lasted over a year, uncovered how Mr Barton befriended wealthy pensioners with no children at Barton Park Nursing Home in Southport. He then groomed his victims to become a beneficiary in their Wills and obtain power of attorney. Mr Barton liquidated his target’s assets before draining their bank accounts of the proceeds.

Benjamin Myers, the QC prosecuting this case, told the trial that Mr Barton deliberately isolated victims from friends and family and used his aptitude to “worm his way into the hearts and finances of wealthy residents and to pray upon their frailties and vulnerabilities”.

Mr Myers said that victims became dependant on Mr Barton and that they trusted him and relied upon him. He added: “He led them to believe that he was the only person who cared for them. They believed he was their saviour.

“They would make him their friend, their next of kin, the beneficiary under their wills.

“He would take their money from them whilst they were alive and he would try to take whatever he could from their estates once they were dead.”

The businessman, who was respected in the local area, got away with his crimes for 18 years. Liverpool Crown Court was told that Barton had fraudulently taken more than £4 million from his victims.

Mr Barton persuaded one person living with Alzheimer’s to give him his classic car collection, which included Rolls-Royces and a Ferrari. He also sold two Rolls Royce cars – worth between £100,000 and £150,000 – to two elderly women for a staggering £500,000 per car. When the women died, he stole one of the vehicles back via inheritance.

Another man paid £1m for just two years of care for his wife. When she died, Mr Barton attempted to claim another £10 million from the estate through a civil claim. While the couple had only lived at Barton Park Nursing Home for two years, Mr Barton argued that they owed him a further £10m for care and services. He had previously tried to agree a deal with the wife where she would receive lifelong care for her and her husband in return for transferring all her money to him.

Commenting on the case, Judge Steven Everett said: “He is one of the most unpleasant people, one of the most dishonest people, one could ever meet.

“His behaviour was nothing short of despicable.”

Mr Barton also laundered funds through the bank accounts of his sons, ex-Conservative councillor David Richard Barton and David Charles Barton. Both deny money laundering. Rosemary Booth, the general manager at the home was also convicted of two counts of conspiracy to defraud.

Three other people were charged with conspiracy to defraud. Of these, Mr Barton’s former solicitor died before the trial began, a senior carer was found not guilty, while a bookkeeper admitted conspiracy to defraud and false accounting.”

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