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FSA stops unauthorised firms which took £464,000

The FSA has won High Court judgments to stop two unauthorised firms trading which claimed to offer investors high returns on non-existent investment schemes.

NCI International and D&R Consulting Group took deposits worth £464,000 in October 1999. Investors were told the money would be held with a reputable US bank. However, the US company operating the scheme, Sterling Enhancement Group, had complete control over the assets, not the bank.

The scheme promised returns in excess of 75 per cent a year but none of the investors received any of their money back. The High Court ruled there was no evidence the scheme existed other than as statements on paper.

Michael Dinmore and Roelof Hofman were found to be acting in contravention of sections 3, 47 and 57 of the Financial Services Act.

Until April 2000, Dinmore was an appointed representative of a reputable financial services firm and it is not alleged his activities had anything to do with that firm. He set up NCI and was a director of D&R along with Hofman.

FSA director of enforcement Dan Waters says: “Authorised people and firms have to comply with the FSA&#39s requirements that help protect consumers and they have access to complaints and compensation arrangements if anything should go wrong.

“But if consumers take financial advice from someone who is not authorised or put money with an unauthorised firm, then they have no access to the appropriate compensation scheme.”

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