Six solicitors - including two-part time judges - were among nine people who appeared in court today in relation to allegedly fraudulent legal aid claims made for more than £12.6m.
Appearing before His Honour Judge Loraine-Smith in Court 4 at London's Southwark Crown Court this morning were: solicitor Joseph Ameyaw-Kyeremeh, 67, of Croydon; solicitor Samira Bashir, 47, of Slough, Berkshire; part-time immigration judge Rasib Ghaffar, 48, of South Woodford, London; solicitor Azhar Khan, 46, of Pinner, Middlesex; legal clerk Gazi Khan, 50, of Isleworth, Middlesex; solicitor and part-time immigration judge Kareena Maciel, 46, of South Woodford, London; solicitor Lloyd Moody, 48, of Surbiton, Surrey; barrister Shahid Rashid, 57, of Langley, Berkshire; and solicitor and part-time civil judge Razi Shah, 48, of Windsor, Berkshire.
The nine filled two rows of the glass-walled dock. They were asked to give their nationality and date of birth. No pleas were entered.
The plea and trial preparation hearing was adjourned until 12 October. All nine were granted unconditional bail.
In June the Metropolitan Police confirmed that the nine had been charged following a complex fraud investigation, which began in December 2012 after HM Courts & Tribunals Service reported allegedly fraudulent applications for legal costs made to the National Taxation Team. The defendants appeared in Westminster Magistrates' Court last month.