View more on these topics

Small firms’ adviser faces jail

A North-east financial adviser who specialised in the small business sector has admit- ted charges of theft, cheque forgery and deception at a court hearing.

David Hedges, 50, of Sherburn, Durham, admitted the charges when he appeared before Teeside Crown Court. He was told he faced a possible jail term when he returns for sentencing.

The court heard that Hedges had been the subject of a lengthy investigation by the fraud section of the economic crime unit of Cleveland Police.

The scale of the fraud is estimated at between £100,000 and £1.4m.

Evidence was given that Hedges had been highly reg- arded as a financial adviser to small businesses when he worked for Barclays in Newcastle, Durham and Sunderland.

But after taking a redundancy package 10 years ago, he set up his own business, Professional Business Services, offering financial advice to and investing in small businesses in the North-east. It is thought that at one point he may have been involved with as many as 30 businesses in the area.

After complaints from some of the businesses, fraud squad officers began to investigate. Shortly before the trial, Hedges declared himself bankrupt.

Local businesswoman Annie Fawcett, who traded as Nursing Staff Solutions said: “I was forced to declare myself bankrupt, lost my home, savings and business and was driven to the point of despair by Hedges.”


Five lifecycle funds from Canada Life

Canada Life International has launched five funds with Fortis Investments which incorporate a lifecycle feature allowing them to rebalance from equities to fixed income as the maturity date approaches.

No alarms and no surprises

This week saw the demise of The Mortgage Business, HBoS’ packager lender, an unsurprising indication for many of how precarious the mortgage packager market has become.


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up


    Leave a comment


    Why register with Money Marketing ?

    Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

    News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
    Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

    Money Marketing Events
    Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

    Research and insight
    Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

    Have your say
    Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

    Register now

    Having problems?

    Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

    Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm