• Jonathan Bromage

The Great British Property Scam

The scandal of “armchair investments” and Unregulated Collective Investment Schemes

Unlawful property investment schemes have now failed in huge numbers across the UK. Hotel rooms, student accommodation, rooms in care homes, storage pods and car parking spaces have all been sold unlawfully to unwitting investors. At one point even burial plots were being sold in this way. Billions of pounds have been taken from people, in many cases from their pension or retirement nest egg. Promised high level returns, some now face retirement in penury.

It is now widely acknowledged that virtually all these property developments were Unregulated Collective Investment Schemes (UCIS). The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) are currently investigating and prosecuting the first culprits. Others will follow in their wake.

Schemes like this should be authorised by the FCA. In not doing so a whole range of offences are being committed and now coming to light. At the same time, many schemes still exist and continue to be marketed by unscrupulous sales teams in the full knowledge that they are UCIS.

The Great British Property Scam explores the origins of these schemes and how they have slipped under the radar for so long. It will examine failed schemes and look at how they have fallen foul of the legislation. The role of those agents marketing these schemes to the public will be scrutinised, along with that of the all-important lawyers. Real investor stories and interviews will bring life to the subject as we look at the effects on their lives. The role of the Insolvency Practitioners will also be addressed, reflecting the conflict of interests that are present. Finally, the potential solutions for investors will be made clear with input from law firms and barristers currently working on many cases.

Over the coming weeks I`ll be posting further extracts from The Great British Property Scam.

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