Greek Poker Pro Charged With £61 Million Commercial Mortgage Fraud

Billionaire Property tycoon Achilleas Kallakis was charged yesterday with defrauding the Allied Irish Bank (AIB) and Bank of Scotland out of £61 million.
Kallakis, formerly known as Stefanos Kollakis, was able to build up a sizable property empire helped by loans secured by him from the banks, but which eventually resulted in AIB suffering a huge £56 million loss and a £5 million loss for the Bank of Scotland.
At the heart of the investigation were allegations that Mr Kallakis and his business partner Alexander Williams, originally known as Martin Lewis, managed to secure over £700m in loans from AIB over 5 years by providing fraudulent guaranteed lease payments. By forging documents to show property tenants had longer term lease contracts and were paying higher rents than was actually the reality, the pair managed to secure an impressive property portfolio that included buildings which housed the ‘Daily Telegraph’, parts of the Metropolitan Police, the UK Home Office’s asylum processing centre and Orion House.
By 2008, AIB decided to take control and sell off Kallakis’ property empire after they became suspicious about the Greek tycoon’s guarentees, and in the meantime they reported him to the Serious Fraud Office.
Mr Achilleas Kallakis was ”a member of some of Britain’s most exclusive social clubs and as recently as two years ago he was developing the world’s most expensive penthouse apartment in St James’s Square.” However, he is now out on bail until May 4th when he will be sentenced for charges related to conspiracy to defraud, forgery, fraud by false representation, money laundering, and deception.
Achilleas Kallakis is a well known celebrity on the poker circuit and earned around $350,000 from live tournament cashes since 2004, including a 3rd place finish at the Pacific Poker Open 2005 for $100,000. However, he is perhaps best remembered for a famous televised poker moment when he was eliminated from the Party Poker European Open III after a freak cold deck saw five of the players all holding pocket pairs, including AA, KK, QQ. Kallakis eventually lost the hand with his pocket rockets after his opponent spiked a Q on the river.

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