SIB sounds alarm on two schemes: Injunctions issued on unauthorised bonds

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INVESTORS who may have given money to an unauthorised investment scheme run by a former marine, Ian Lloyd-Wright, are being urged to contact the Securities and Investments Board, writes Maria Scott.

The regulator obtained injunctions against Mr Lloyd-Wright and a company that he runs, LW Investment Corporation, which is registered in Delaware in the United States, to stop him taking money into two unauthorised bonds. The business also has a client service centre in Limassol, Cyprus.

Mr Lloyd-Wright's schemes are not authorised for sale in the UK under the Financial Services Act.

The SIB believes up to pounds 750,000 may have been invested in the bonds over the past few months, mainly by UK expatriates or people who have recently returned from working abroad.

The injunctions prevent Mr Lloyd-Wright from conducting investment business, making unsolicited calls and making misleading statements in the UK. He is also prevented from disposing of or dealing with any assets.

The SIB began to investigate Mr Lloyd-Wright's schemes after reports from the insurance company Eagle Star's Isle of Man office, where it was noted that investors were withdrawing large amounts of money from Eagle Star policies. Mr Lloyd-Wright is understood to have sold Eagle Star policies in the past.

One of his bonds is a guaranteed growth bond, with the underlying assets said to be securities. The other is a guaranteed bonus bond. The bonus bond was offering between 12 and 14 per cent interest, including bonuses.

The regulator believes Mr Lloyd-Wright, who appears to have an office in Johannesburg, is in South Africa at present. The SIB is making further efforts to establish whether investors' money is safe.

Investors who have dealt with the firm should contact the regulator's public information office on 071-638 1240.

People who lose money through unauthorised investment schemes are not eligible for compensation under the Financial Services Act.

Mr Lloyd-Wright has been involved in the financial services industry in the past. He ran a firm called Lloyd Wright School Fee Services, which was later taken over by his ex wife, Joanna Carvell. She later traded under the name Parents' School Fees Services and in June 1989 she was jailed for two years after being convicted of theft and fraud. The court was told that she took money from clients for school fees plans that was not invested.

Ms Carvell's defence counsel told the court that she had been influenced by Mr Lloyd-Wright and that he had left her with an insolvent business relying on corrupt methods.

Mr Lloyd-Wright has been described in the press as the 'million dollar man' because of the commission he is said to have earned from selling investments.

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