Baroness' Former Housekeeper Charged With Fraud

If found guilty, Loloahi Tapui could be facing 10 years in prison

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Baroness Scotland's former housekeeper has been charged with using a false passport, fraud and overstaying her visa.

Tongan born Loloahi Tapui worked at the Chiswick home of the Attorney General until September when it was discovered that she had overstayed her visa. The 27 year was subsequently arrested along with her husband, Alexander Zivancevic, and their flat searched by immigration officers.

Tapui was charged on Friday 27th November and will appear in court on December 7. If found guilty, she could face up to 10 years in prison.

In a statement her publicist, Max Clifford said there were "mitigating circumstances" surrounding the charge of overstaying her visa adding "She is claiming she never misled Baroness Scotland and has never given anyone false information."

Zivancevic was cautioned for assisting unlawful immigration but will face no further charges according to the CPS.

Last month Baroness Scotland, who could be called as a witness in the trial, was fined £5,000 for employing Tapui. Despite calls for her resignation, the Attorney General hung onto her job after Gordon Brown said she had only committed a “technical” breach of the legislation she had helped to push through Parliament.

She told Sky News, “I made an administrative, technical error for which I am bitterly, bitterly sorry. I will never fail to take a photocopy [of an employee's passport] again. I got it wrong. It was a technical breach and I have paid the penalty.”

November 29, 2009