Conman pleads guilty to defrauding woman out of nearly £300,000

A serial conman has pleaded guilty to defrauding his ex girlfriend out of nearly £300,000.

Mark Acklom, 45, who has convictions dating back to the early 1990s when he a teenager, duped Carolyn Woods into lending him her life savings for renovation work at a number of properties he owned after promising to marry her.

On Wednesday Acklom, who was extradited from Geneva, Switzerland, admitted five counts of fraud by false representation before his trial at Bristol Crown Court was due to start.

The court heard he had misled Ms Woods into thinking they were in a “committed relationship” and would get married in order to get her to loan him a total of £299,564 to renovate properties he owned.

Mark Acklom at Inner London Crown Court
Serial fraudster Mark Acklom making one of his first court appearances as a teenager in 1991 (Mike Stephens/PA)

He faced a 20 count indictment including fraud by false representation and converting criminal property, but his barrister Gudrun Young asked for him to be re arraigned after a jury had been sworn in his trial.

After his guilty pleas to five counts of fraud, prosecutor Charles Thomas said: “Those pleas are acceptable to the Crown.”

Judge Martin Picton adjourned sentencing until 2pm on Wednesday.

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