Broker admits £32m Ponzi scheme

Nicholas Levene, the Bentley-driving former stockbroker who spent a spell as deputy chairman of Leyton Orient Football Club, looks set to face a long prison sentence after yesterday admitting to orchestrating a £32m "Ponzi" fraud.

The 48-year-old, who was known as "Beano" because of his love for the comic, used other investors' money to pretend he was earning healthy yields on his funds over a period lasting four years.

The case, at Southwark Crown Court, involves victims including Stagecoach Group's co-founders – brother and sister Sir Brian Souter and Ann Gloag – who lost £10m to Levene. The former City worker's high-flying friends are reported to included property developers the Tchenguiz brothers, music mogul Simon Cowell and Sir Philip Green.