Tuesday, 05 February 2019 11:38

Director gets 2 year sentence for running illegal £600,000 UCIS

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FCA's Mark Steward FCA's Mark Steward

Manraj Virdee, the director of a firm running an illegal unauthorised investment scheme (UCIS), has been given a two year suspended prison sentence following a case brought by the FCA.

The judge in the case agreed Mr Virdee had been “spectacularly unsuccessful” with his investment scheme which mainly used money from friends and family.

The FCA said the scam was “nipped in the bud” before more investors were ripped off.

He was sentenced at Southwark Crown Court this week to a two year prison sentence suspended for two years and ordered to carry out 300 hours of unpaid community work for fraud and running an illegal investment scheme.

He had pleaded guilty to four charges relating to misleading consumers, fraud and the illegal operation of an unauthorised investment scheme worth over £500,000.

Mr Virdee was sole director of Dynamic UK Trades Ltd. Between October 2015 and November 2017 he promoted a deposit taking scheme without authorisation from the FCA, mainly targeting wider family and associates. 

He also entered into an agreement with one investor to manage £192,500 in spread betting trading in which only £10,000 was used as promised. 

Mr Virdee received a total of approximately £600,000 in funds from investors some of whom were ‘guaranteed’ returns of up to 100% based on his claimed success as a currency trader. 

In reality, only £457,119 of those deposits were traded by Mr Virdee and almost all of these funds were lost or used to fund Mr Virdee’s lifestyle. 

In sentencing Mr Virdee, Judge Pegden QC agreed with the prosecution’s description that his trading over the two year period was “spectacularly unsuccessful.”

The FCA has obtained a financial restraint order against Mr Virdee’s remaining assets and will pursue confiscation proceedings in relation to Mr Virdee’s remaining assets to help compensate the victims.

Mark Steward, executive director of enforcement and market oversight at the FCA, said: “The FCA’s prompt action nipped Mr Virdee’s fraud in the bud and stopped it becoming inevitably bigger, causing greater loss to a wider group of victims.”

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