The Tchenguiz activities in leasehold property were highlighted in the House of Commons yesterday by Sir Peter Bottomley.
In a brief aside during debate over the private rented sector, Sir Peter referred to “the Tchenguiz interests featuring in the Office of Fair Trading report on abuses of leaseholders, overvaluations of freeholds and the sale of managers’ flats”.
The issue will be referred to at greater length when the Commons considers requests from the Serious Fraud Office for extra funding.
Vincent Tchenguiz still owns a purported one per cent of all residential freeholds, which have been on the market for two years.
In October he and his brother Robert are claiming £300 million compensation from the SFO for their arrest on wrong evidence in March 2011.
This resulted in their highly geared house of cards property empire to collapse, which also saw Peverel pitched into administration.
The SFO has asked Parliament for a £19 million top-up, which brings to £24 million the additional funds required over and above its planned £36.6 million budget for 2013/14.
SFO director David Green has told MPs that the additional money was needed to cover the exceptional costs of cases, including the agency’s defence against the Tchenguiz claims.
Sir Peter’s intervention is the first indication that attention is now focusing on “overvaluations of freeholds and the sale of managers’ flats”.