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High Court shuts down £20m property scam

The High Court has shut down a property investment company for defrauding close to £20m of investors’ money.

Essex and London Properties was incorporated on 15 April 2005, with a registered office in Sidcup, Kent.

It claimed to purchase properties with the intention of selling them on at a profit or getting rental income for investors.

Potential investors were approached directly or via intermediary platforms, who received 35 per cent of the invested amounts and offered partnerships in a limited partnership scheme.

Investors were persuaded to invest by offers of an 8 per cent annual return paid quarterly if the money was held for three years or 12 per cent if the money was held for one year.

Over an 18-month period, more than 800 people invested in the company anywhere between £5,000 to over £100,000.

Essex Police, which has an ongoing investigation calculates to date £18.9m has been obtained from creditors and investors.

The reality was ELP only purchased a single property; a house in Harwich for £147,000 which is less than 1 per cent of the overall amount of money collected from investors.

But ELP gave information to investors claiming it had purchased numerous properties that had rapidly increased in value.

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