Twin brothers who allegedly made millions from a ‘stock picking robot’ scam have been ordered to pay back over £100,000.
Alexander Hunter will have to pay $100,000 (£61,000) whilst his brother Thomas has been ordered to pay a $75,000 penalty after they agreed to settle civil action in the US. The pair have not denied or admitted the allegations.
The twin brothers are alleged to have come up with a robot scam in 2007 devised and run from their bedroom in North Tyneside when they were just 16. They are said to have claimed that the sophisticated computer trading programme could identify stocks that were set to increase in value but it is claimed that the companies selected were actually paying the brothers to promote them to clients, according to the Securities and Exchange Commission in the US which brought the civil action.
The pair promoted the alleged scam on websites which claimed the robot's stock analysis could earn clients returns of 34% per week, according to the Telegraph. They are also alleged to have received $1.86m in fees from stock promoters.
Officials claim the brothers breached both the Securities Act and Securities Exchange Act. The SEC took out permanent injunctions against them to prevent the twins from continuing to engage in securities fraud and an order requiring them to hand over money.