Fake Banker, Spy on U.K. Most Wanted List Arrested Near Zurich

(Bloomberg) -- A man accused of taking about 850,000 pounds ($1.12 million) from an English woman by posing as a Swiss banker and British spy has been arrested in Zurich.

Mark Acklom was nabbed near the Swiss city after being tracked down in a joint effort by Swiss and British police, the Avon and Somerset Constabulary said in a statement on its website. He had been on the U.K.’s Most Wanted list of fugitives and was tracked down with the help of a European Arrest Warrant.

Police say Acklom befriended the woman over a period of a year, telling her at one point that he was posing as a banker and was really a spy with MI6. He eventually persuaded her to invest her life savings in the renovation of a series of properties in the western England city of Bath.

A spokesman for the Zurich cantonal police confirmed that Acklom was arrested Saturday night. Acklom is in custody but will oppose being extradited, according to Folco Galli, a spokesman for the Swiss Justice department.

Acklom fled to Spain before moving to Switzerland and the U.K. police worked with the National Crime Agency and Swiss police to track him to Zurich, according to the police statement.

“I suspect a fraudster like Acklom will have continued offending while on the run, which is why it was so important to apprehend him,” Ian Cruxton, Head of International Operations for the NCA, said in the statement.

If extradited, Acklom will be sent to the U.K. to appear in court in relation to 20 counts of fraud, 12 tied to converting or removing criminal property and eight counts of fraud by misrepresentation.

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