There is an element of risk in all financial schemes, but where an investment scheme is not genuine or has no hope of generating any sort of return for investors, it can cross the line into fraud.

Investment frauds can take many different forms and can be carried out through different mediums, such as the internet or brokers and even qualified professionals such as financial advisers or accountants.

The common feature is:

  • The targeting of an investor, often who is vulnerable or elderly

  • to try and convince them to part with their savings. This could be to invest in a company, a development or any supposed investment opportunity offering a high rate of return

  • using high pressure selling methods and making misleading assurances/false representations as to the true value of the investment.

Common types of investment fraud which we specialise in defending include:

  • Ponzi scheme fraud –  works on the basis of investors being paid out by new investors. Short–term high returns entice new investors to the scheme, and the scheme continues so long as there are new investors to keep it afloat.

  • Pyramid fraud – works in a similar way except the investors then recruit new investors.

  • Boiler room fraud – a scam organisation offers shares in a company that either does not exist, or if it does exist, is not trading in a way that would result in the yield promised. Quite often the organisations offering the shares are run from other countries and potential investors are targeted by way of cold calling.

These cases require careful and skilful preparation of the defence case as the consequences of a conviction are grave.