23rd March 2017
Ponzi Scheme Fraud
A Ponzi Scheme is a type of fraud that was named after Charles Ponzi who set up the first in 1920, which defrauded investors who were promised high financial returns. The same principle is used today, which can lead to serious consequences if you are found guilty. If you have been accused of being part of a Ponzi Scheme, it is in your best interests to get in touch with a solicitor at your earliest convenience and we will deal with your case from the onset. We are available to represent you anywhere within the country and will defend your case for you in court if necessary.
Free initial telephone consultation
Our highly skilled Fraud team are here to take the worry off your hands. We can provide an initial telephone consultation to see how we can assist in your case. For more information, please call Glen Henry on 0203 866 1844 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is a Ponzi Scheme?
A Ponzi scheme is a type of fraudulent ‘pyramid scheme’ which offers investors large returns during a short period of time. These respective investors are paid not from profits, but from new investors investing their money into the scheme which essentially creates a domino effect. In the short term, everything goes to plan and nobody loses financially, which builds a reputation and more investors get on board. Eventually, there will reach a point where there is no more investment and the scheme collapses, causes everyone in the ‘pyramid’ to lose money.
It is essential to know that these investors would still be perceived as victims of fraud even if they are not losing money and are instead making a profit. If you have been accused of fraud by setting up a Ponzi Scheme, it is in your best interests to seek legal representation to present the facts and clear up any legal discrepancies.
What sentence could you receive?
If you have been accused of being affiliated with setting up a Ponzi Scheme, the chances are you work in financial services which means your reputation is everything. Regardless of what sentence you receive, the worst punishment will be that your reputation would be tarnished, undoubtedly leading to a long term negative impact on your career. The sentences you could receive include:
- A substantial fine
- A prison sentence of over 1 year if you can prove that you yourself have lost money from the scheme
- A prison sentence of 2 years for a regulatory offence
- A prison sentence of 14 years if money laundering has occurred
Even if you escape a prison sentence, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) may begin a separate investigation against you, which could lead to long term reputation damage. If this happens, you will need a specialist in financial services to advise you of what steps to take next.
Who is the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)?
The Financial Conduct Authority is an independent, government enforced financial regulatory body in the United Kingdom and was founded in 2013. The FCA’s sole responsibility is to regulate financial firms by providing its services to consumers while ensuring that the overall standards of the UK’s financial markets are maintained. More specifically, the FCA focuses on the conduct of retail and wholesale financial services firms.
If certain standards are not met then the FCA have the authority to investigate both organisations and individuals. Once the investigation has took place, they have the power to order firms to retract or modify promotions which are deemed to be misleading and ban financial products for up to a year and potentially indefinitely.
If the FCA finds you guilty of insider trading, you could be faced with a maximum penalty of 7 years imprisonment. Considerations will be taken including:
- The circumstances you came into possession of confidential information
- Whether you consciously caused an offence
- The level of planning involved
- Whether you acted alone or within a group
- Whether your actions were for financial benefit
What defence could you use?
In order for you to be found guilty, the prosecution must prove beyond all reasonable doubt that you acted dishonestly. If you are the organiser of the scheme, it would be sensible for you to explain the business plan of how the investors would have made the amount of returns promised to them and how the financial losses occurred. It would also be wise to explain your role even if you are lower down the hierarchy by outlining what your job role is and how you were unaware of any wrongdoing.
How we can help
If you have been accused of being involved in organising a fraudulent Ponzi Scheme, our experienced Fraud Defence Solicitors are available to put forward your case in the best possible light and advise you throughout the entire process. We promise to:
- Advise you throughout the entire process
- Advise you on a confidential basis of any concerns you have
- Represent you in an interview under caution with FCA
- Prepare and collate all required documents for FCA
- Represent you in court if necessary
- Take the worry off your hands
- Argue your case
- Prepare an appeal if necessary
Given the broad area of law surrounding Ponzi Schemes, we will ensure to deal with your case by finding all of the facts and circumstances.
Our team are highly ranked in the Legal 500 and Chambers and Partners guides. We have extensive experience in successfully defending businesses and individuals accused of fraud.
Why Choose Us?
At Cartwright King, our solicitors understand the stress and worry being accused of setting up a fraudulent Ponzi Scheme can cause and the potential long term consequences that can affect you, your business and your future. We are available to support you throughout the entire process, explain the likely outcomes and fight on your behalf.
How to make contact
If you require any legal advice or if you would like a no obligation, free initial telephone discussion, then please call us on 0808 168 5550 and ask to speak to Glen Henry. Alternatively you can email the Fraud team on email@example.com and we will get back to you as soon as possible.
Our Fraud Defence Solicitors can provide advice across the country and are happy to meet at a time and location that suits you. We also have a network of offices in London, Birmingham, Bedford, Bolton, Derby, Leeds, Leicester, Luton, Manchester, Milton Keynes, Newcastle Gateshead, Northampton, Nottingham, Oxford, Reading, Sheffield, Wellingborough and Worcester.
- Mark Hopwell — Head of Department
- Andrew Brammer — Head of Regulatory
- Sundeep Soor — Head of Tax & Fraud
- Richard Cornthwaite — Head of White Collar Crime (London)
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You can always call us on 0808 168 5550 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
22nd March 2017
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