Monday, 27 October 2014

How I lost $250,000 with Barry Payne of Easyqrops

This month's tale shines a light on the darker side of humanity. It's a story of deception that led a foolish man to lose everything. A sequence of events showing how things are never as they seem.

You’re working class trash. How did you ever accrue such an amount?

First off it was ‘only’ $225,000 (£140,000 or 7.3M THB). I rounded to the nearest $50,000 for effect. However, with interest it would’ve been almost $0.25M.

In 1991 I joined the Royal Navy aged 17. My parents gave me £10 for the 8hr train journey from Newcastle to Plymouth. My net worth was £10.  By the time I’d arrived in Plymouth my net worth was back to £0.

For the next 22 years I never earned more than an average salary. However, through a combination of hard work, frugal living, lucky house flips, eschewing marriage, diligent saving and compound interest I’d managed to achieve a substantial net worth. The purpose of which was to realise a dream. A dream to be free from the bonds of modern day wage slavery. In essence, I longed to be a free man.

OK. So what happened?

Being a risk-averse lad I was happy to leave the cash sitting in a standard UK savings account. The thought of losing decades of hard-earned savings terrified me. Then Phuket happened. To get to the root of this disaster we have to turn the clock back to Phuket, 2011.

Phuket? Thailand?

Yes. I was working there when I met Barry Payne, a QPR supporter from the south of England. We shared an interest in global economics and discussed many topics around the swimming pool. At that time historically low Bank-of-England base rates (0.5%) and meager savings rates (1%) were hurting savers. The UK’s inflation rate (5%) meant people’s savings were losing 4%pa and (using basic logarithms) would lose half their value in 17 years.

Over the course of 2011 Barry Payne (using a Montpelier Wealth Management email address - but now running Easyqrops) started hinting at a new investment vehicle he was touting. Third Party Litigation Funding (TPLF) namely: Centaur Litigation and Growth Series II. TPLF basically funds court cases and takes a slice of the winnings. The proposed product had a 100% capital guarantee backed by a comprehensive insurance package. This was vital. I did not want to expose my hard-earned to any risk.

I toyed with the idea for six months before plunging in November 2011. I scrutinised the brochure with a feverish intensity satisfied there was no sleight of hand. I was shaking as I transferred most of my life savings to an HSBC account in Hong Kong. Happily, everything went to plan and I invested more (the rest of my savings) into Centaur Income Accelerator III (Principal Protected Shares) in May 2013. I retired in July 2013 confident I was set for life.

Sounds good. So what went wrong?

I was enjoying early retirement in Chiang Mai when I stumbled across this in February 2014:

http://www.offshorealert.com/brendan-terrill-argentum-litigation-fund-buttonwood-legal-capital-suspected-ponzi-scheme.aspx

I shat myself. Ponzi is a horrible word that no investor wants to hear. I refused to believe this could be true. I’m sure there’s a psychological explanation for my refusal to face reality in these circumstances. Denial? Rationalisation? I called Barry and he told me it was merely malicious press speculation. Mental gymnastics told me that the 100% capital guarantee would protect me and this journalist must be wrong.

He wasn’t. Barry Payne was.

In June 2014 the funds went into Provisional Liquidation:

http://www.scmp.com/business/money/markets-investing/article/1524093/litigation-investment-fund-centaur-litigation-put

In September 2014 www.grantthornton.com.au the provisional liquidators produced a report detailing the scale of incompetence, embezzlement and lies we'd been sold. It was like reading your own obituary. It's supposed to be confidential but the South China Morning Post gives an overview:

http://www.scmp.com/business/money/markets-investing/article/1595379/centaur-litigation-funds-misappropriated-backed

This passage is incredible:

"capital guarantee structures that investors were told would protect them in the event of a loss either did not exist or were for the most part issued by firms connected to the funds' founders and former directors and show little likelihood of being honoured."

So the entire house of cards was built on lies? Additionally, it appears Scott Williams and Brendan Terrill, the former directors and alleged beneficiaries of "irregular transactions" have done-a-runner:

http://www.smh.com.au/business/liquidators-hunt-for-alleged-centaur-litigation-ponzi-scheme-boss-scott-williams-20140713-3buza.html

Jeez. Why did you invest in that shite?

Simple.

1. Negative interest rates in UK banks.

2. 100% capital guarantee.

3. Decent returns not linked to volatile stock markets.

4. Argentum Capital (funded by Centaur) was chaired by retired London High Court judge Sir David Keene lending the whole enterprise a comforting air of credibility and legitimacy.

5. A safe way of funding an early retirement dream I’d worked hard to achieve.

It’s abundantly clear now that investing everything was irrational – easy to see in hindsight. However, back then I was sure of my decisions as I was 100% convinced by the 100% capital guarantee. This illusion of security was my Achilles’ heel.

Looks like you’re fucked. What will you do?

Yes, I agree. I’m fucked. I managed to retire at 39 only to have the rug pulled from underneath a year later. I’m skint again. The same as I was at 17 on the train to Plymouth. Retirement’s over before it began and I’ll be looking for full-time work again very soon.

Funny, I rode a £9,000 Ducati last month and could’ve bought 15 of them. Now I can barely fill one up with petrol. Life can change in a breath. Rich to poor in a day.

How do you feel?

Like a rolling stone. When I first learned of the situation I experienced a waterfall of negative emotions. For 48hrs I wanted revenge – to punish those responsible. Torture and murder tantalised my thoughts.

The emotional pendulum swung from suicide to shame. How could I have been so stupid? Anger and grief overwhelmed me. This was the worst I’d felt since my Mother passed away in 2008. Decades of work and sacrifice for nothing. It was a terrible couple of days.

Cruel world

It seems everyone is enriched but the mugs investors. Barry Payne gained a generous commission for hooking me. The elusive fund managers Scott Williams and Brendan Terrill (if they’re their real names) are likely millionaires living in opulent luxury. The liquidators earn in an hour what I spend in a month.

I’ve met a lot of folk who’ve lost on the stock markets (hence my reluctance to go there) but they’ve all, without exception, got something back. We, on the other hand, have lost the lot (despite the 100% capital guarantee). I still don’t understand how that can be? However, facts are facts and we’ve received no interest payments in 2014. The capital is due back in November 2014 (with interest) but we're getting the square root of FA.

Do you blame yourself? Have you learned anything?

I blame myself for believing the 100% capital guarantee lies that led me to become entangled in this web of bullshit. I blame myself for being greedy. I blame myself for listening to a Financial Adviser working on commission. I blame myself for not acting in February when suspicions were first aroused. I blame myself for putting all my eggs in one basket – a classic blunder. I blame myself for becoming an inadvertent victim.

What have I learned? Nothing in life is permanent. Security is an illusion – it can be snapped away in an instant. I’ve learned to be humble as evidence clearly shows I’m not as clever as I thought I was. It takes a special kind of dumbass to lose quarter of a million.

Poor life choices lead to people being poor

I believe this maxim is true and I’m not immune to its mechanics. This was, by far, the poorest decision I've ever made. What a fuck up.

Future

After the initial shock of learning that I'm totally skint I’ve had to regroup and consider my predicament. The only thing I own of any value is a motorbike. It’s unlikely I’ll ever accumulate that much wealth again. However, this rags-to-riches-to-rags story will not destroy me. I will be resolute. I will continue to live a modest life, adhering to the tenets of minimalism, squirreling bits away when I can.

Thinking positively, I'm healthy, debt-free and have an uncanny ability to live happily on very little. Obviously I'll have to change this blog's sub-heading to 'Embracing minimalism and early retirement in Chiang Mai, Thailand.'

Justice

I would like to believe Scott Williams and Brendan Terrill will receive justice at some point in the future. However, just like their funds, this can’t be guaranteed. Perhaps karmic justice will prevail where human systems are found wanting.

Are you looking for sympathy?

Not really. I penned this as writing helps to galvanise my thoughts. Any ex-serviceman will tell you that sympathy comes between shit and syphilis in the dictionary.

Instead, I’d like to take this opportunity to warn people about the perils of Financial Advisers, glossy brochures promising the moon-on-a-stick and, most importantly of all, a reminder that the best criminals wear suits.

This scam was so well executed I almost want to applaud them. Nigerian internet scammers have nothing on white men in Armarni. I wonder if they'll evade the law in perpetuity? They’re obviously smart guys. Do yourselves a favour and leave any savings in the bank. At least you’ll still have them at the end of the day. Failing that, go for tangibles (eg. property, gold).

If you must invest, only invest what you can afford to lose. Don’t, whatever you do, go balls-deep like I did – it’s financial suicide and a future of impoverished wage slavery.

It's too late for me but if just one person benefits from my experience something positive will emerge from this cesspit of gloom.

My life destruction in pictures

A quarter century of hard work …… gone.  I want to cry when I think of the condos, motorbikes and women this could’ve bought.

In fact, thinking about it, that's exactly what I should have spent it on. I wish I could go back in time.



Centaur II. Hilarious.

You try to do the right thing by being financially responsible but end up with nowt.

I wonder if Brendan Terrill and Scott Williams have since invested in TPLF? They should do based on iron-clad guarantees like these.





Centaur III. I took a leap of faith based on this? Doh!

I should have asked for proof of all this fancy-sounding BS before committing. How could I fall for such lies? Where was the due diligence? Caveat emptor.



Conclusion

I’ve been spending time in Temples trying to reconcile what happened while reflecting on the Buddha’s teachings. I’ve found enormous comfort here. I envisage Buddhist spirituality complementing a minimalist approach to life in the future.

Finally, I'll finish with a couple of quotes I can’t seem to get out of my mind:

When you ain't got nothing you got nothing to lose. – Bob Dylan

You only lose what you cling to. - Gautama Buddha

Letting go gives us freedom, and freedom is the only condition for happiness. If, in our heart, we still cling to anything - anger, anxiety, or possessions - we cannot be free. - Thích Nhất Hạnh

Life goes on. Peace.

94 comments:

  1. Hi,

    I have lived in phuket 10 years,a marine eng working offshore.
    Me to put a whack in and now thinking exactly the same clinging onto some hope of
    getting something back.
    Just enjoy thai lifestyle and put it down to experience a very expensive one,nearly as bad as my three divorces
    thought i hadto get some luck in life but no hit by number four financial disaster.
    I wouldnt care most influential people i spoke to said dont touch it sounds like a ponzi,wished id listened.

    arniewilloughby@yahoo.co.uk

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  2. Hi Arnie,

    Sorry to hear that. If I could build a Delorean I'd take you back to 2011 with me. We just need a flux-capacitor.

    Steve

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  3. Unfortunately we live in a world where deception is the norm ' A lot of people are robbed with pistols, more are robbed with the pen' I have spoken to Stephen and a thousand others in the same boat over the years and it destroys peoples lives . expatinvestmentclub.com was formed to educate investors so they cannot make these mistakes, its free and their is no selling . Where their is monies left in these toxic investments we form action groups to get the monies released back to clients quickly . This no easy task . At the moment the groups formed are for Brandeaux funds, Mansion funds and Premier New Earth . John Marks

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  4. I wish you all the best John. If http://www.expatinvestmentclub.com/ can save just one innocent person from the sharks out here in Southeast Asia your efforts are to be applauded. You'd basically be preemptively saving people's lives. I wish I'd heard of it four years ago. I hope this article will help others too.

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  5. Hi Gordie,

    I'm also a Centaur investor, and noticed that you have just joined the action group that I too belong too. I did not lost everything in Centaur. Sadly, for me, I lost a lot in another Thai scam. I'll definitely be working my retirement. I spend time in CM, so maybe I'll run into you some time. Good luck!

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    1. Sorry to hear there's so many of us. Perhaps we can commiserate over beers as we bust our balls into old age.

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    2. Hi - I am Ken Ament, a Centaur investor now living in Indonesia. I (like many) are HAPPY that Grant Thornton (GT) managed to recover some money, but DISGUSTED with the crazy Distribution method and with the fact that the IFAs/Orion who sold us this are not only getting off scot-free, but they still have their hands in the cookie jar. We are trying to voice our position to GT, but right now we are just lone wolves in the forest, and GT seems to take little heed. It would be nice if more people would email GT. Please contact me at spikerkena@yahoo.com and I can update you with some recent correspondence with GT and with the Liquidation Committees.

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  6. Hey Stephen - I'm so sorry to hear your story. Motherfuckers. Lots of stories of this sort in Canada where these financial advisors, some of who were at it for over 20 years, ran away from their investors when the markets crashed and they couldn't cover their debts.
    You're a smart guy and have an incredible ability for languages. Maybe this could be motivation for a new career? I know it really sucks but maybe there's a silver lining, even if it's the slimmest of silver linings?
    I'll be thinking of this story as I go to bed tonight. So sorry about the news, I've been following your blog for years and it saddens me.
    Frank *bbqboy)

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  7. This sucks. Even though you got skint, awol Geordie, I would still rather be living where you are than where I am and you have a job or can get another math job, so keep your chin up! Enjoy your life and keep us all posted on your blog.

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  8. @Frank @Dan. Thanks lads. I appreciate the support. Aye, it looks like I'll be back to work - likely teaching maths again. I really thought I'd made it too. Aah well. It's an unjust world. They're really no better than street muggers. In fact worse given the magnitude of people's monies taken. I wonder how many lives they've destroyed?

    Anyway, life goes on. Bikes to ride, lingo to learn and marathons to run. Thanks again lads.

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  9. If you are an investor and interested in joining with us to pursue our rights and remedies as investors please visit:

    http://www.centaurinvestors.com/

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  10. This post send a shiver down my spine because I'm 30 now and have saved up about $350,000. The money is all over the place and diversified, but large amounts are in mutual funds. I always try to diversify but sometimes when you're really into an investment it's hard to stop putting money into it.

    "Invest in seven or eight different ventures for you do not know what disaster will befall you."
    Ecclesiastes 11:2

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    1. Good luck but be very very careful. I always considered myself a cautious soul and look what happened. There will be wankers trying to rid you of that hard-earned cash. Never trust IFAs either - it's not their skin in the game. They're crooks. At least you had the sense to diversify.Too late for me but if you manage to invent time travel give me a shout!

      Also, consider leaving it in a bank????? I wish I had.

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    2. Banks can go under too. You're only covered for £80,000 per person in each account if they go under. Either lots of bank accounts or put it in property (buy to let or buy, renovate, sell), classic cars (no CGT!).

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  11. Well your not the only one , I to live in Phuket and for me an even bigger loss as I put in a total of 200,000 GBP into Centaur Litigation , 100,000 in December 2012 and 100,000 in October 2013. And to make thing worse I lost 65,000 in the Glanmore property fund and now have 750,000 GBP locked in Brandeaux Student funds that are still suspended. All this nightmare because I trusted a well known financial adviser who also lives in Phuket , who made massive commissions from me.

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    1. I also lost money in Glanmore. Does anyone know of a class action being taken to try and recover the funds?

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  12. Sorry to hear that Pete. The more I hear about people's lives being destroyed by IFAs the angrier I get.

    To be fair Centaur mentioned 'capital growth' but they neglected to explain how that growth could be negative, as much as -100%. So much for capital guarantees. Wankers. The liquidators will likely hoover up what remains. Nightmare.

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  13. If anybody is concerned and wants to search their portfolio for potential 'toxic investments' They should ask www.expatinvestmentclub.com . for their free portfolio check . Regards John Marks

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  14. Chiang Mai expat investors are suffering from the collapse of the Australian LM Ponzi scheme, with many in the same situation as you, Geordie. The main IFA here who was responsible for selling the toxic investments was working hand in hand with offshore product providers such as Friends Provident, Skandia and the like, all of whom were pushing the crap right up until its collapse.in spite of online warnings going back as afar as 2009. The FA was earning at least 15 per cent on commissions, and did a runner to the UK shortly after the collapse.

    A BKK LM victim group is attempting to start legal action, as are other groups in Thailand hit by the toxic investments mentioned above. However, while the offshore product providers are allowed to continue ripping off expats in this manner, these ongoing scandals will continue. Surely it would be possible for victims of all such IFA frauds to get together in large numbers and hit out at financial jurisdiction regulators and the governments behind them which are simply ignoring the wrecking of expat lives.

    It can be done - google 'the rape of Hong Kong' fr a very effective LM victims group which has already forced the Hong Kong government to outlaw the selling of ILAS products, another scam which made fortunes for IFAs and the product providers.

    Mimi

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    1. Thanks for the info Mimi. It's truly heart breaking to hear of all these lives/dreams being systematically destroyed. My hope is that people reading this may think twice BEFORE plunging.

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  15. Sorry to hear about your fate and congratulations for having the guts to tell the world about it.

    I've gone through a similar ordeal. It was not a small Ponzi scheme like yours but the biggest one in the world - US stock market. Then IRS shafted me to top it off. In my case, I lost a lot more money and ended up in 10,000 USD hole. But I learned valuable lessons (you listed the identical points). People carrying guns on streets are dangerous, but they are toddlers compared to banksters.

    We are of similar age. Even though I had 10 years to recover and still retire early, I hope you will have your chance to get your life to where it should be. There is little we can do but get up, dust off and go ahead, but never forget the lessons learned.

    Best of luck to you!

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    1. Thanks and well done for getting back up and succeeding.

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  16. Once there was a Chinese farmer who worked his poor farm together with his son and their horse. When the horse ran off one day, neighbors came to say, “How unfortunate for you!” The farmer replied, “Maybe yes, maybe no.”
    When the horse returned, followed by a herd of wild horses, the neighbors gathered around and exclaimed, “What good luck for you!” The farmer stayed calm and replied, “Maybe yes, maybe no.”
    While trying to tame one of wild horses, the farmer’s son fell, and broke his leg. He had to rest up and couldn’t help with the farm chores. “How sad for you,” the neighbors cried. “Maybe yes, maybe no,” said the farmer.
    Shortly thereafter, a neighboring army threatened the farmer’s village. All the young men in the village were drafted to fight the invaders. Many died. But the farmer’s son had been left out of the fighting because of his broken leg. People said to the farmer, “What a good thing your son couldn’t fight!” “Maybe yes, maybe no,” was all the farmer said.

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    1. Thought provoking.

      Live in the moment. Don't regret the past or worry about the future. Enjoy the now.

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    2. You seem wiser than your years friend.

      These two books changed my life:-

      "A Manual for Life" - Epictetus

      and "The Power of Now" availables as audio book. Read and understand them and money is totally insignificant.

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  17. Hi saw your link on Thaivisa, sorry for what happened to you, made me a bit sad really.

    You write well, Take care & All the Best ( Paul )

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  18. I really feel sorry for you and all that get ur retirement funds and life savings stolen by unscruplous bastards. what all of u shoudl do is that another time an IFA pops up, simply get all teh guys togther and put him in a sack and beat the living daylights out of him. For those guys that ran away, pull all ur resources togther and find them and their families and finish these scum off before they do it to others again.

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  19. Very sad story. Have you tried filing a complaint with the local regulator, the Thai SEC? Not sure that it'll help you recover any funds, however if you can get the IFAs on the SEC's Investor Alert list it may help warn off others.

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    1. Thankfully they are now on the Investor Alert List - but they need closing down, suing or imprisoned - they've been at this for years.

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  20. Thank you for sharing your story. You write well and this post is helpful to me as a very conservative (and perhaps gullible) investor myself. One sentiment I take issue with is that women are objects like condos or motorbikes to be bought and sold. Women are people who are also trying to make it in this difficult world.

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    1. Mmmmm. But most poor men are single while millionaires have models on tap. Why is this? Could it be female hypergamy? Are these women not selling themselves?

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    2. Women are people. Condos and motorbikes are objects.

      What if I changed your sentence to: "I want to cry when I think of the condos, motorbikes and people this could’ve bought."

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    3. Women are people.

      Indeed they are but they can still be bought. Presumably you would not marry a tramp? I wonder why? Marriages are simply contracts. Look at prostitutes and pornstars. Or even domestic maids. All bought to do someone's bidding. Just like objects. Just like me being bought to teach maths.

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  21. Hey man. I was watching the movie Reign Over Me and for some reason I kept thinking about you and thought I should reach out to you. Stay strong.

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    1. No worries. I've accepted it. Moved on. Let's hope this piece can save a few others.
      All the best.

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  22. Replies
    1. Agreed. There were certainly some very strange forces acting within my consciousness when I decided to hand over my entire hard-earned life-savings to thieves. Perhaps that force was Karma.

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  23. And what about the promoters? Chris Keats of Orion who made millions in commissions. He claims to be innocent. He's apparently just completed a huge house in the island resort of Phuket.

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  24. Greetings from the cold hell in the west.
    First of all, my deeply felt sympathy for your loss.
    And question: Basically it was the mention of "100% capital guarantee" in their own promotional materials that incite your trust and made you transfer most of your life savings to the bank account of some unknown crooks? Why did you not checked if they are registered and regulated as financial institution - it would not take much effort to protect your lifetime savings - or am I missing something here?
    Al in all it was just money - great you didn't try to earn it back fast to end up in Bangkwang jail with life sentence like many others - that would be truly horrible. I admire the way you dealt with it in your mind.
    Have a nice day in your sunny Chiang Mai!

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    1. Hi Iraya,

      I guess I trusted my IFA. He was a friend. Kind of tragic but it's the truth.

      Best wishes.

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  25. If the IFA was real registered UK IFA, did you consider this:

    If a client buys a financial product on the advice of an IFA which turns out to be unsuitable, they have the right to complain and, if the complaint is upheld, may receive compensation If a complaint is not dealt with satisfactorily internally, the client has the option of going to the Financial Ombudsman.

    Checking if the Centaur is registered and regulated would take just few minutes and if the the IFA recommended you those unregulated Ponzi crooks without checking their legal status, you should be able to make him pay for it - complain in UK FCA - http://fca.org.uk/consumers
    He is as responsible for your loss as the Williams and Terrill themselves.

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  27. It doesn't matter if it's the UK, Canada, USA, Australia - these parasites are everywhere. The promoters who rip off investors, the government authorities who collude with them, the liquidators who dole out minuscule capital returns while charging the wreckage inflated fees for their so-called skills - parasites, each and every one of them.
    Based on my experience of losing about 40% of my savings, my hindsight advice is - don't give the bastards any oxygen. Treat financial advisers as if they are lepers. Screw your government for every cent of pension you can get - it's their incompetence that assisted you into your predicament.

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  28. Hi Geordie,

    I'm really enjoying your writing. Keep up the good work!

    I too invested about 60,000 pounds in the Argentum fiasco and while no one likes losing that kind of money, I'm determined it's not going to ruin my life.

    I wouldn't give up hope yet though. There's still a rescue package in place and I'm trying to stay hopeful of getting at least a chunk of it back.

    This is NOT the only investment that has gone south for me and when the dust finally settles, my losses could amount to about 100,000 pounds - all investments were done through the same financial advisor.

    Keep your chin up!

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  29. Hi Geordie

    Same as everyone else, I trusted my IFA (loose statement) who'd I also liked ( mind I doubt if I would of given him my money if he acted like an arsehole) he advised me to put 30,000 GBP into Centaur, this was after he had previously advised me to put 160,000 GBP into L.M. both funds have since collapsed, I am retired and am trying to live on a pittance of a pension.

    Like Phil hoping that I might get something back but not expecting it.

    Does anyone know if there is a Centaur invest group as L.M. has a very active group of which I belong, I have tried http://www.centaurinvestors.com/ which does not open.

    Best regards

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    1. Try this:
      https://centaurinvestors.onlinegroups.net/

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  30. Woops...looks like the Preview button just ate my lengthy post. So, I'll keep the rewrite short.

    A very positive result is your inspiring others to put shit like this in the rear view mirror through honesty and attitude. You have your health and a sharp ability to find the good in life. More than most I think. Best of luck.

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    1. I think reporting him to the police might be a very good idea. And to the British Embassy there. Of course I will keep you in the loop. I reported him to SEC who were very helpful - it might be an idea for you to do too - http://www.sec.or.th/EN/Pages/Home.aspxhttp://www.sec.or.th/EN/Pages/Home.aspx (their contact details are at the foot of their home page). The person who I was dealing with is called Patiwat Unruan - patiwat@sec.or.th - but I have no idea if they are still there. The more people who complain the better. Is there a Thai ex pat newspaper we could put an ad in asking for victims to come forward & make contact? Do you have no win no fee lawyers in Thailand?

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  33. I put $50,000 into this fund (aimed at my mum's retirement) through another local financial advisor PPI, who had a good track record, and several I know are also in on this. It's not all lost (yet), as of July 2015 the various financial advisors managed to raise $6 million towards financing the rest of the cases to recover some money, it's been i the hands of professional liquidators (Grant Thornton) for some time, with some professionals taking it over, hopefully we all recover a portion. All the same, amazing how so many wise investors and advisors were taken but scheme that reveal such blatant incompetence and scamming. The two blokes who did a runner apparently took about $5m with them, but much of the 80 million pounds raised has disappeared into bad cases that flopped.

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  36. Strange - the links didn't go through. I'll try again: https://www.facebook.com/lmivc/posts/822391594541992 and https://www.facebook.com/lmivc/posts/810551102392708:0

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    1. Thanks. Very interesting facebook articles. Reading them highlights how 'green' I was. There seems to be hundreds of dodgy scams out there. That $400M Canadian one? Wow. Centaur was 'only' around $150M. At least those two Canadian wanks got 12 years each.

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    2. Hi again. I know, I can't believe how green we were too. Making some good headway with the LM Investors' Victim Fund Group Thailand. We are in the middle of joining them which involves giving them all of BP's details. They push SEC to approach the Royal Thai Police. Also putting pressure on BCCT and if we don't get some positive news from them by mid next week am taking my complaint to their head office in UK. Stay well and keep smiling - sorry not been in touch sooner.

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  37. Chris Keats sold it with 100% guarantee but Orion seems to have dissolved. Keats is in Phuket in a luxury home. Spaek to him. Scott Wilson is supposedly living near Suvanabhumi with a wife and Thai family as Keats visitied him but could not remember where it was!! We should try finding them and claiming money back for malfeasance and mis selling.

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  38. Contact SEC, Thai Securities Exchange Commission - complain@sec.or.th There's a lot of stuff going through them at the moment - could be a good time.

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  39. Hiya - you might be interested to read the editorial in The Big Chillie this month - pages 6 and 8 - http://issuu.com/thebigchilli/docs/the_bigchilli_october_2015

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  40. http://www.nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk/news/733-man-used-hotel-internet-to-share-indecent-images-of-children-2

    Oh dear Mr terrill

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  41. This is just what I was away to post, I have alerted GT, does anyone think that we may be able to get some of our cash back now if he has not spent it all the sick fuck..

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    1. Get in touch with SEC! They are great and taking it all very seriously.

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  44. EasyQrops International
    http://legacy.phuketgazette.net/digitalgazette3/Content/March05-11.pdf?thequerytype=&id=76259&Cat=34

    Page 10 – bottom left – and dated March 5-11, 2011

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  45. Lots of people complaining! Let's hope!
    http://www.thebigchilli.com/news/duped-by-financial-experts

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  48. Brendan Terrill has been jailed for child pornography: http://www.nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk/news/733-man-used-hotel-internet-to-share

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  49. Barry Payne didn't sell Centaur through Montpelier - turns out he was working independently.
    He used a Montpelier email address until 2013 and gave the impression he was working for them.
    However, Montpelier were not involved in the Centaur farce.

    The more this saga goes on the more confused I get.

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  50. Duane MgGaw (one of the Centaur managers) has opened a posh Japanese restaurant in Vancouver. I'm happy for him. Perhaps one day I'll be able to afford a meal in it. Not many of his victims will be able to though.

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  51. Why do GT not find Scott Wilson in Bangkok near the airport at his house with his Thai wife and kids where Chris Keats visited him and sue him and Keats?

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    1. Could GT be protecting Keats in this way? They still do not allow anyone to use the only information available as they want it kept confidential. This is not in investors' interests.
      Why do GT not start to pay back some of the money they got back?
      Maybe they just want to bill more and more fees for themselves.

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  52. I think some who lost money and live in Phuket should visit Keats in his new house and get out of him the address of Wilson by whatever means.

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  53. I'm in Taiwan. I've just lost 40,000 through a similar scheme (New Earth), again very cleverly done - I thought I was the one in control of the investments, but this one just slipped through. Would like to know how you held it together in the first few weeks? I feel physically & mentally very sick. Trying to keep myself together.

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    1. Hey man. The pain will pass. It's now 3 years and life goes on. There are still times when I dwell on this loss and become angry, however, the anger doesn't get my money back, or benefit me in any meaningful way. So I 'try' to let it go - although it is easier to say than do.

      It's Barry Payne the financial advisor I feel most contempt for. How could he not know that Scott Fisher / Scott Williams / Trent Strong was a convicted financial criminal? The other criminal masterminds are Brendan Terril and Duane McGaw. Brendan Terril is in jail for child porn and the Duane McGaw is running QSHIQ - a posh arsed Japanese restaurant in Vancouver. It's like a bad joke in a nightmare.

      Just try to keep it together mate and the awful feelings will pass. I wish you well.

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    2. I know what your going through this whole thing is a nightmere I've lost £ 130Klost new earth £ 110K LM investment management £ 440K centaur all together out of investing £ 750K all I got back was 68K it's unbearable can stop thinking about it friends provident international are also selling Ponzi schemes they where supposed to protect us from frauld does anyone have any claims against them my life's ruined the only hope I have left is some thing coming back front centaur

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    3. I am praying we get a bit back from them too. Scott Fisher / Scott Williams / Trent Strong is due in an Aussie court according to an article I read in an Aussie newspaper. Not that I have much faith in western courts when it comes to financial fraud. But you never know. We can but hope.

      Sorry to hear your story. A £68K return from a £750k investment is criminal. We try to do the right thing and end up f*cked.

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Please be nice.