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Adviser who diverted £1.2m is jailed for six years

A Lincolnshire financial adviser has been sentenced to six years imprisonment after he admitted that his money lending business had lost £1.2m of investors’ funds through fraudulent trades.

Alan Joseph Richardson’s business MFC Finance Ltd, of Wellingore, Lincolnshire was touted as a high-yielding investment vehicle but in fact diverted client funds as loans to businesses he owned.

MFC was managed and run by Richardson from 1998 until its collapse in 2004, with it still owing over £1.2m to private investors.

The firm obtained capital from ind- ividual private investors who were promised rates of return of over 18 per cent and the safe return of capital. MFC then sought to make a profit on the margin between the rate of interest paid by the firm to investors and the rate charged to borrowers.

The Serious Fraud Office and Lincolnshire Police Economic Crime Unit launched a joint investigation in March 2006 and Richardson was charged on May 6 2008 with various counts of fraud.

Richardson was sentenced today to six years in prison after pleading guilty at a previous hearing on March 2 and was also disqualified from acting as a company director for ten years.

SFO director Richard Alderman says: “This is an impressive result obtained with the partnership of Lincolnshire Police for the numerous elderly and vulnerable victims who lost their life savings as a result of Alan Richardson’s fraudulent activities.”


The fear market

Last week, I started my look at some important current realities underpinning investment attitudes and action. These were founded on research carried out with US investors and advisers but I believe that there are some useful insights that we can draw on when considering the UK.

Contributory factors

Other firms look set to follow Aon’s lead in cutting contributions into its pension scheme.

Budget holes

Another Budget, another disappointing damp squib. This year’s announcement by the Chancellor was one that will be remembered by some – but certainly not by the mortgage industry.


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