A corrupt solicitor who was a 'go to' lawyer for criminals has been struck off.

Ross McKay, 41, was previously jailed for seven years after he assisted with a huge mortgage fraud.

Scott Rowbotham, 38, amassed a £10 million property portfolio across Greater Manchester, with the help of criminals and the proceeds of crime, including drug dealing.

McKay was jailed last year after a jury unanimously found him guilty of three counts of money laundering.

Police said McKay, a father-of-three, was the criminals' 'go to' lawyer, because he would not ask too many questions about their business or where the money was coming from.

Ross McKay

Now following a hearing of the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal, McKay has been struck off.

McKay, who qualified as a solicitor in 2004, accepted he should be banned.

The tribunal said that McKay's actions had caused harm to the reputation of solicitors.

They also said his conduct was made worse because it happened over a number of years.

In January last year at Manchester Crown Court, Judge Timothy Smith told McKay: "You were expected to be a person of utmost integrity and honesty.

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"You fell far short of those high standards of professionalism, trust and integrity that are to be expected of a solicitor.

"You failed, as was your duty, to uphold the law and the proper administration of justice." 

Rowbotham, from Stalybridge was able to persuade lenders to hand over huge cash sums by lying about his income and forging payslips.

Scott Rowbotham

He was jailed for three years and eight months in May 2017, after admitting fraud and money laundering between 2004 and 2014.

Then in December 2018, Rowbotham was ordered to pay back £3,522,459 within three months, or face 10 years in jail.

It was the highest ever figure awarded by a court following a GMP financial investigation.

After McKay, formerly of Sagars Road, Handforth, was jailed, Adrian Ladkin, a senior financial investigator from GMP’s Economic Crime Unit, said: "McKay was fully aware that the purpose of the transactions was to launder criminal proceeds and he was deliberately dishonest in facilitating them.

"As a solicitor, McKay was in a position of trust, but he spectacularly failed in his legal duties through his corrupt and unlawful actions.

"It is thanks to the meticulous work of the officers in this case that today he has been brought to account for his deceitful actions."