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FCA urges victims of Symbiosis Healthcare investment scam to come forward

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Written by: Emma Lunn
04/10/2019
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has urged victims of an illegal investment scheme to come forward after the conviction and sentencing of three men.

Southwark Crown Court made confiscation orders against Samrat Bhandari, Muhammad Mirza and Paul Moore, following their earlier convictions and prison sentences for running an illegal investment scheme that lost investors more than £1.4m.

Between 2009 and 2014, the trio systematically misled investors, many of whom were retired and vulnerable, by giving them wholly misleading information about the value and prospects of Symbiosis Healthcare Plc.

Bhandari has had a confiscation order made against him for £376,604, all to be paid as compensation to the confirmed victims of his offending. The amount of £279,970 must be paid by 7 October 2019 with the remaining £87,634 payable by 21 December 2019.

Mirza has had a confiscation order made against him for £1,190,128, to be paid by 26 December 2019. Of this amount, £754,766.05 is to be paid to confirmed victims of his offending.

The FCA has confirmed the full details of about 200 victims of this scheme. However, the regulator believes that there are other victims of the scheme whose identity it has not confirmed. It has sent letters to their last known addresses seeking confirmation that they were victims but they have not responded.

Until the FCA has confirmed that they are victims, the court cannot direct that sums be paid to them.

Victims need to contact the FCA

The FCA urges any individual who believes they were a victim of the scheme and would like compensation, to contact the FCA urgently. Victims need to provide the following information: Your name (and the name of the person who invested if different), your postal and email addresses, and a  contact telephone number.

If you are acting on behalf of a victim or the estate of a deceased victim, you will need to provide evidence of your authority to act on their or their estate’s behalf.

The FCA will check that everyone who contacts it is eligible for compensation, and then apply to the court to ensure that the money confiscated is paid as compensation. The court cannot hear any application on this issue after 21 November 2019 and so the FCA will need to have full details of such claims by no later than 1 November 2019.

A further convicted defendant in this matter, Michael Moore, has yet to have a confiscation order made against him, and proceedings at Southwark Crown Court are ongoing.

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