Wife left living in caravan after her husband twice remortgaged family home without her permission
THE wife of a man who remortaged the family home twice without her knowledge has spoken of her relief after he was jailed today.
• Fraser Donaldson sentenced to eight months in jail
• His wife Linda now living in caravan after moving out of four-bedroom bungalow
Fraser Donaldson twice remortgaged the house he shared with wife of 13 years Linda to obtain a total of £120,000.
She knew nothing of the fraud until debt collectors turned up at her home on her birthday asking about a deal apparently bearing her signature.
The couple had met in 1997 - when Mrs Donaldson was a wealthy widow with a house, a new car and a healthy bank account.
Now, 15 years on, she is living in a caravan park and has been forced to sell off her jewellery and family heirlooms in a bid to make ends meet.
Linda, 55, who worked as a carer, had been living in a four-bedroom bungalow in Newbigging, Angus - but now stays in a residential caravan near Carnoustie because of her husband’s deception.
She said her new neighbours have been supportive of her - but that her new lifestyle was “chalk and cheese” to her former life.
Linda is now facing a lengthy battle at the Court of Session to claw back some of the thousands of pounds that were lost.
Speaking after watching her estranged husband being led away in handcuffs to start his sentence, Linda said she believed he had scammed up to half a million pounds from her and friends over the years.
She said: “At last I have some closure on one part of the mess Fraser Doanldson has made of my life.
“Justice has been done for me and for all the other people he has taken money from.
“I’ll never fully recover from the physical, mental and financial trauma caused to me and my family.
“I still have a battle to retrieve some of the value of my house from the bank.
“I lost my first husband early - to bury one and see the second go away in handcuffs is horrendous.
“The fraud was a total shock. He was using his parents address as a correspondence addres for the mortgage and the bank statements.
“The first I knew was when someone from the bank came to the door on my birthday and told me.”
Linda added: “It will make a big impact on his life going to prison.
“He is a conman. He said he loved me and then did this to me. He has taken everything.
“My youngest child was five when his father died - so he sees Fraser as a dad to him.
“I have had to sell all my jewellery and I have sold family heirlooms, including a sideboard that my great-grandad made, and family crystal.
“I’m living at Barry Downs caravan park - it is a residential park and it has a great sense of community.
“He has taken so much money from so many people - I think up to half a million pounds.
“I just hope he doesn’t have it all stashed away somewhere so that when he comes out of prison he’s a rich, rich man.”
Fiscal depute Arlene Shaw told Arbroath Sheriff Court: “There have been no repayments made to his wife - only £188 to her mother.”
Donaldson, 54, of Stevenson Drive, Edinburgh, admitted that between August 1 2009 and August 31 2010, at Sanderson Place, Newbigging, Angus he pretended to Birmingham Midshires PLC that his wife had signed a mortgage application and induced the firm to process an application, thereby obtaining a remortgage to the value of £120,000 by fraud.
Defence lawyer Nigel Beaumont told the court that the initial remortgage agreed by the couple was for £60,000 - but repeated the process twice for a further £30,000 each time.
He said: “He was working at a job that he expected to make £45,000 a year but as a result of this he has been sacked.
“As such he has been unable to make the payments to his wife.
“He is very sorry for what he has done to his wife and obviously it has cost him his relationship with her.”
Sheriff Peter Paterson jailed Donaldson for eight months, and said: “I had deferred sentence for you to make payments to your former wife.
“I’m not satisfied with the explanations you have given and I believe you have no real intention of helping her and have made derisory payments so far.
“There is only one disposal open to me, and that is custody.”
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