Based on covert evidence supplied by us, Warwick Crown Court in Leamington charged two fraudsters, Andrew Stephen Harris and David Keith Evans and their company, Shakespeare Classic Line Ltd on 12 counts of fraud.
On the 21st November 2013 Andrew Stephen Harris received 54 months imprisonment and is disqualified as a director of a limited company for 5 years and Mr David Keith Evans received 21 months imprisonment suspended for two years and disqualified from being a director for 2 years. The company Shakespeare Classic Line Ltd is still to have a Proceeds of crime case (POCA) which will happen later in 2014 from this sentencing will then be given.
Shakespeare Classic Line Ltd was run from Nunhold Business Park in Hatton, Warwickshire, whereby they fraudulently sold a fractional ownership share in a fleet of yachts as an investment to unsuspecting members of the public, which involved aggressive and unfair commercial practises and fraudulent trading.
This fraud was brought to the attention of Expert Investigations by one of the victims, who had no interest at the time from the bank, who were underwriting the finance agreements for Shakespeare Classic Line or by the Warwickshire Trading Standards (WTS). This forced the victim to seek an alternative remedy to free them of the fraudulent contract that they had been duped into signing.
We took the case and used a variety of investigative methods to gather the evidence needed to prove fraudulent activity was taking place; such as going undercover and using former Police interviewing techniques to gain as much evidence as possible.
From the evidence gathered it was clear that the business practise was illegal. The staff of Shakespeare Classic Line were confrontational, forceful and adopted intimidating practises, stating clearly that contracts were to be signed immediately with no cool off periods and no opportunity to take away contracts to review and consider. We were instructed to conduct an investigation into the case of Shakespeare Classic Line as the victim (our client) had been to speak with Warwickshire Trading Standards and was advised by them to collate some more evidence to prove what she was saying, which she did via Expert Investigations. Upon the collection of that evidence WTS, who may have already been conducting an investigation, added our client’s evidence to the investigation.
The victim stood to lose £21,000 to this fraud but from spending just £500 with Expert Investigations, after 3 days there was enough evidence to make a case to bring these fraudsters to justice.