Investigation saw developer Elliot Lawless detained last December

Merseyside Police have arrested five people in connection with a bribery and corruption investigation which saw local developer Elliot Lawless arrested last December.

The arrests were made last Thursday (3 September) and included a 51-year-old man and 45-year-old woman from the Cressington area of Merseyside, a 56-year-old man from the Knowsley area, a 34-year-old man from Downholland area of Lancashire and a 41-year-old man from Mawdsley in Lancashire.

elliott lawless

The following day (Friday), police said all five had been released pending further enquiries. The names of those arrested have not been disclosed.

A police spokesperson said that decisions on the outcome of the investigation are not expected for several months.

Police arrested Lawless (pictured) last December and at the same time also arrested a man believed to be Liverpool City Council’s head of regeneration Nick Kavanagh in connection with the fraud probe. Neither man has been charged.

Work on at least three schemes belonging to Lawless with a combined project value of £420m subsequently ground to a halt as investors removed their backing, forcing the developer to put the schemes into administration.

But in April, the High Court ruled that the search of Lawless’ home had been unlawful, and in June Lawless struck a deal to restart work on his £100m Aura hotel and student accommodation scheme with the scheme’s original backers.