The SFO is investigating the activities of Raedex Consortium, including the companies Buy2Let Cars, PayGo Cars, Raedex trading as Wheels4Sure and Rent2Own Cars.
One individual has been arrested and interviewed and then released pending further investigation. The SFO has also interviewed another individual.
As part of the probe, yesterday the SFO, the National Crime Agency and City of London Police, carried out searches on two homes in connection with the probe.
In February, the FCA imposed a number of restrictions on Raedex and ordered it to halt regulated activities because of concern about its finances.
Raedex ran a number of investment schemes offering consumers the chance to invest in car leases through Buy 2 Let Cars Ltd and Rent 2 Own Cars Ltd. The investment scheme is conducted through Buy2Let Cars Ltd which is not FCA authorised.
Raedex was ordered by the FCA not to enter into any new lease agreements. The FCA set no time limit for the restrictions.
The FCA reminded investors that Buy 2 Let Cars Ltd is not regulated by the FCA.
The 'investments' themselves were loan agreements and not liquid investment in marketable securities, the FCA said in February. For this reason it is “unlikely” that investors will be able to exit easily.