Emails misusing the name and details of Gavin Thomas Sullivan
5 January 2017
Emails regarding "unclaimed assets" have been sent which claim to be from "Garvin Thomas Sullivan", "Sullivan T. Gavin" or "Sullivan".
What is the scam?
The SRA has been informed that scam emails have been sent which falsely claim to be from "Garvin Thomas Sullivan" or "Sullivan T. Gavin" or "Sullivan".
The initial false email may just refer to the chance of a "business deal" and the opportunity to benefit from "unclaimed assets". Subsequent false emails may refer to the recipient being able to benefit from the estate of someone and may request that the recipient provide identification documents.
One of the emails seen by the SRA provided a copy of a fake Practising Certificate in the name of "Sullivan Garvin Thomas" and a passport in the name "Garvin Thomas Sullivan". The fake Practising Certificate included the SRA number of a genuine solicitor (see below).
The emails the SRA have seen have been sent from the email addresses: firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com although they show as having been sent from: "Sullivan G.Thomas", "Sullivan G.T." and "SUM, OF".
One of the emails seen also provides a contact address of 15 Cornwallis Street, Liverpool, L1 5GD and telephone numbers +44 70457 48135 and +44 70240 93513.
The SRA does not authorise or regulate any solicitors called "Sullivan Garvin Thomas" or "Garvin Thomas Sullivan".
Any business or transactions through the email addresses firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com, or the other contact details set out above, are not undertaken by a solicitor's practice or an individual authorised and regulated by the SRA.
Is there a genuine firm or person?
The SRA does authorise and regulate a genuine solicitor called Gavin Thomas Sullivan, whose genuine SRA ID number is 441508. The genuine Mr Sullivan has confirmed that he has no connection to the emails referred to in the above alert.
What should I do?
When a firm's or individual's identity has been copied exactly (or cloned), due diligence is necessary. If you receive correspondence claiming to be from the above firm(s) or individual(s), or information of a similar nature to that described, you should conduct your own due diligence by checking the authenticity of the correspondence by contacting the law firm directly by reliable and established means. You can contact the SRA to find out if individuals or firms are regulated and authorised by the SRA and verify an individual's or firm's practising details. Other verification methods, such as checking public records (e.g. telephone directories and company records) may be required in other circumstances.