Two men convicted and imprisoned over a massive “boiler room” share fraud have been ordered to pay back a total of £11 million to the victims they scammed. (The Business Desk)

Jeffrey Revell-Reade, who masterminded the fraud was ordered to pay £10,751,000 and an accomplice, Anthony May was ordered to pay £250,000. The fraud was one of the largest ever uncovered by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) and stole around £70 million from investors between 2003 and 2007. According to the SFO the fraudsters used the money to fund extravagant lifestyles for themselves, which included luxury yachts, overseas properties and wine collections.

The boiler room is the place from which fraudsters cold-call investors and sell them shares with a promise of a high return for a quick decision, which later turn out to be worthless and sometimes in companies that don’t exist. Around £200 million is scammed in this way every year in the UK with the average investor losing £20,000 and the largest recorded individual loss being £6 million. Boiler room frauds can also start from emails, word of mouth, direct mail or investment seminars, and the fraudsters usually try to scam the same victims again with a different scheme, or sell their victim’s names on to other fraudsters.

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