Investment Fraud

investment fraud

Investment fraud lawyer – Every year, private investors in Germany invest a double-digit billion amount in various capital investments. Investment fraud occurs with the offer of shares, funds or endowment insurance policies – the spectrum of cases in investment fraud is diverse and at the same time also unmanageable.

In Germany, there were almost 8,000 cases of investment fraud recorded by the police in 2016. The number of unreported cases is much higher, however, as many of those affected do not consider legal action in the case of investment fraud.

If you have become a victim of investment fraud, you should act quickly. Even in cases where amounts have been transferred abroad, there is often the possibility of freezing accounts in order to recover funds after investment fraud has been committed.

The lawyers of our law firm serve clients from all over Europe who have suffered losses, some of which have been considerable, due to investments abroad.

In the current phase of low interest rates, investors often do not know how to invest their money as profitably as possible but still safely. It is not easy to find forms of investment that meet personal needs. In addition, there is always the risk of falling victim to one of the numerous investment fraudsters who are making a nuisance of themselves on the investment market.

Investment Fraud – How do I recognize a Dubious Investment?

Investors must therefore be vigilant and carefully consider to whom they entrust their money in order not to lose money through investment fraud. Often, however, there are clear signs of possible investment fraud – the sooner such fraud is detected, the better.

If the following characteristics occur in connection with an investment, you should act with extreme caution:

  • The investment advertises with extraordinarily high interest rates.
  • The agent receives a high commission on conclusion.
  • It is urged to a fast conclusion of the investment to secure itself alleged advantages.
  • The contact to the broker exists exclusively by telephone.
  • The seat of the contracting party is abroad.

In this case, it is best to engage a lawyer who has the necessary experience in the field of investment fraud.

Many classic investments are unattractive due to the current phase of low interest rates. However, some investors are not satisfied with this and want to invest in investments that promise significantly higher profits.

For capital investment fraudsters, the starting situation is ideal for impressing investors with high interest rate promises. In some cases, unattainable returns of up to 50 percent are promised.

Here it quickly becomes clear that this must be dubious business and that investment fraud is being attempted.

But there’s a more subtle way to deal with investment fraud: Professional investment fraudsters in particular know that their offers must appear attractive but not completely unrealistic. Returns of 6 to 8 percent do not sound impossible at first, but are still far above the average achieved by serious, conservative investments today. So here too, investors should pay close attention.

The promise of high returns may indicate that your investment is not really being managed seriously. Or it could be a highly speculative investment. Although there is a theoretical possibility of realising high profits, there is also an enormous risk of total loss of the investment through fraud.

Investment Fraud Lawyer

Another sign of shady deals and investment fraud can also be when your broker receives a high commission for making an investment. Here you should bear in mind that the agent has a vested interest in you investing your money in certain investments.

Therefore, the advice given is not necessarily objective. Some agents will therefore try to convince you to invest in an investment that is not tailored to your personal needs. There is a danger here that risks may be concealed from you and the prospects of success of the investment may be presented too positively.

In some cases, certain advantages are intended to make the immediate conclusion of the investment palatable to you. Alleged preferential prices or the securing of tax advantages are a frequent argument.

This is intended to deprive investors of the opportunity to reconsider their investment thoroughly.

Also a comparison with other offers or even a search for the plant in question should be prevented in this way. Investors are to be brought in such a way to transfer as fast as possible their money. Often the cheats thereby already reached their goal and committed an investment fraud.

Field reports on dubious providers: is the Internet lying?

  • Are you planning an investment that seems absolutely safe and promises good profits?
  • Do the planned returns of an investment advisor simply seem too high to be realistic?
  • Is your money really safely invested or do you have to expect a total financial loss?

Gerade im Vorfeld einer geplanten Investition spielt die Seriosität eine entscheidende Rolle.

The investment advisors appear competent, the website is professionally designed – could this be an investment fraud?

To be on the safe side, research is now still being carried out on the Internet for the experiences of other investors and objective test reports. Often one encounters very positively formulated information, which praises the provider of your choice as extremely competent and reliable.

But be careful: such experience reports from online reports should be met with scepticism. For the black sheep of the industry, “opinion making” on the Internet is an optimal advertising medium.

They buy articles with a positive conclusion or simply design websites themselves, on which their investment opportunities are reported favourably.

It is not uncommon for a lot of effort and money to be invested in order to appear in the top positions for the corresponding search queries. Our Kanzlei for investor protection guesses/advises therefore from investments, with which doubts about the respectability arise – even if an offer in the Internet experiences positive resonance.

If you should smell a possible investment fraud, a lawyer can initiate an examination or legal steps.

Modern financial products: promising risk or investment fraud?

CFDs, deals in crypto currencies, Binary Options, worthless real estate funds or snowball systems: Investment fraud occurs today in many different forms of investment.

Nevertheless, financial products in which investors speculate on short-term price developments have become a trend in recent years. Such leveraged financial products promise enormous profits.

But to the same extent, the total loss of the invested funds is also threatened by investment fraud.

For many investors this mixture seems attractive, even if it is similar to betting in casinos. While CFD trading is already banned in Belgium and strongly limited in Great Britain, the German Financial Supervisory Authority has ordered the abolition of the obligation to make additional contributions.

Nevertheless, numerous dubious suppliers can operate on the market almost as usual with minor restrictions.

The situation is even more critical in the area of binary options – some experts and lawyers see this investment opportunity as alleged investment fraud.

Here, providers have already been unmasked and severely punished.

An Investment Fraud often begins with a Telephone Call

  • An alleged investment advisor contacts you by telephone?
  • He/She offers you the purchase of shares at a preferential price or wants to inform you about a new fund that promises particularly promising returns?
  • A personal contact with the advisor never takes place?

Such calls are often made by fraudsters operating from abroad.

Here, a systematic approach is taken and investment fraud is threatened. Professional-looking websites of alleged consulting firms can also be found on the Internet.

The potential companies in which investments are to be made also have their own web presence. But here too, caution is called for. If it later turns out that the investment and investment fraud was fraudulent, it is usually difficult to catch those responsible if there has never been any personal contact before.

A similar problem arises if your contractual partner has a registered office abroad. Claims that you wish to assert against your contractual partner are more expensive to enforce under civil law if they have to be recovered abroad. Especially in the case of addresses of well-known tax havens, you should think twice whether your contractual partner is a reputable company or whether it could be investment fraud.

Investment Fraud – What can I do to protect myself?

Against this background, you should always follow a few simple rules in order to exclude at least certain risks and prevent investment fraud:

  • Do not be blinded by high yield promises! If you want to achieve interest rates above the market level, you usually have to resort to speculative forms of investment.
  • Let your broker inform you about his commission! Agents are usually obliged to do this on their own initiative anyway. If the commission is high, remember that the agent has a vested interest in you concluding certain investments.
  • Take your time! Only sign contracts after you have researched the investment in detail. Also compare the offer with other investments. Do not make your decision until you (and not your agent!) have cleared up all doubts yourself.
  • Insist on a personal consultation on site! Do not entrust your money to someone you have never looked into the eyes of before. Serious intermediaries will advise you in their branch or will be happy to make an appointment at your home.
  • Prefer companies based in Germany! This will make it much easier for you to enforce your claims in case of dispute.

If you take these tips from our lawyers to heart, you already limit your personal risk considerably.

If the unfortunate outcome of an investment should nevertheless occur, you should not give up on investment fraud. From retained profits and non-payouts to price manipulation or the “disappearance” of the financial advisor: the forms of investment fraud are manifold.

If the provider is also based abroad, many investors find themselves in a supposedly hopeless situation.

Often it is countries such as Hong Kong, Cyprus, Bulgaria or Romania that are home to such black sheep. Most of the time, of course, the addresses are just a P.O. box.

As a person affected by investment fraud, the distant place of jurisdiction may act as a deterrent, but even in these cases legal claims can often be enforced.

In other words: Money long thought lost can still be recovered.

The first step is a thorough examination of the facts and the basis of the claim by an experienced lawyer who is well-versed in legal areas such as investment fraud and investor protection.

Investment fraud – investors should react quickly if suspicion arises

However, it is not always possible to completely rule out the possibility that your money has nevertheless ended up in the wrong hands. So if you suspect that you may have been the victim of dubious business dealings, quick action is mandatory.

The sooner you assert your claims and engage a lawyer, the greater the likelihood that you will get your money back. Those who act too late often go away empty-handed in investment fraud.

Once the company of your investment has declared bankruptcy or the people involved have taken off with your money, this makes it considerably more difficult to recover your claims even in the case of investment fraud.

Get in touch with the lawyers of the Herfurtner law firm today. Our lawyers will check for you whether you can assert claims against your agent, the company of your plant or third parties.

If there is a suspicion of investment fraud, we will also work closely with the relevant criminal prosecution authorities for this purpose.

The lawyers of Herfurtner Law Firm advise clients in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and the Benelux countries who have suffered financial losses due to investment fraud.

Our lawyers are familiar with the current methods used in investment fraud and initiate the appropriate legal measures to recover lost funds.

Investment Fraud Lawyer – What can we do for you?

In many cases, injured parties can recover money already paid. However, investors should not hesitate and should immediately have their options examined by an experienced lawyer. Herfurtner Lawyers work closely with public authorities and financial institutions and have often been able to repatriate large amounts of money to clients in the past.

We offer the following services to affected investors and clients in case of investment fraud:

  • Involvement of the police and financial supervisory authorities

    There are already collective proceedings against certain fraud companies at the police and public prosecutor’s office both in Germany and abroad. Herfurtner Lawyers represent countless aggrieved parties and are in close contact with the responsible authorities. Public prosecutors’ offices and financial supervisory authorities in Germany and abroad can block the fraudsters’ bank accounts and secure assets.

    In many countries our law firm has personal contacts with the authorities. Often the accounts of alleged fraudsters are located in Hong Kong. Herfurtner Lawyers have already successfully concluded numerous court cases – e.g. in Hong Kong – with the result that our clients’ deposits have been refunded.

  • VISA, Master Card, American Express – refund possible

    If the payments to the alleged fraudsters were made by credit card, injured parties can often take advantage of the protection of their credit card provider. Amounts already paid can be charged back. Herfurtner Lawyers will check for you whether the necessary prerequisites are met.

  • Transfers can be posted back

    Many injured parties have the option of reversing a bank transfer. Even though many months had already passed since the transfer, Herfurtner  Lawyers were able to recover payments from our clients. It does not matter that the accounts of the alleged fraudsters are regularly located abroad.

Investment Fraudsters Arrested – great success against investment fraudsters

A raid resulted in 110 arrests of suspected fraudsters. The arrests were made mainly in Spain and England. Two years of intensive investigation have paid off. It’s the biggest operation of its kind against organised investment fraudsters. The Financial Services Authority in England reports that British investors lose over £200 million every year.

The scammers employ financial experts to ensure that business runs smoothly. They act in the belief that the crimes committed will not result in any consequences. However, the numerous arrests in this case show that the fraudsters do not go unpunished for investment fraud.

Consequences of the raid

The raid by the British and Spanish police represents a major blow against the investment fraudsters. Many aggrieved investors are getting their money back. Nevertheless, it cannot be assumed that this criminal business model would disappear completely as a result.

Instead, the fraudsters will move their activities to other countries where they consider prosecution less likely. These countries include Thailand, Taiwan, Hong Kong and some island states. But even in cases of investment fraud, there are possibilities to recover deposited funds, says Patrick Wilson.

Investment Fraud – Millions fFrozen in Hong Kong Accounts

Great success against the investment fraudsters. The Hong Kong SFC (Securities and Futures Commission) has frozen USD 4.3 million in accounts of alleged fraudsters. The lawyers of Herfurtner Law Firm work closely with SFC as well as with other foreign authorities. Only by working closely with the competent local authorities can repayments of the investments be achieved in such cases.

The frozen accounts are associated with the companies Broadspan Securities, Shepherds Hill Partners and Rich Futures.
Typical for such cases of investment fraud is that the bank accounts are not held directly by the alleged investment firms, but additional firms are involved.

This is intended to make it impossible for outsiders to trace the individual account movements. In the present case six other companies were involved as account holders – Timeprime Limited, Lynwin Limited, Resmart Limited, Fieldmark Corporation Limited, DH Corporation Limited and SMD Partnership Limited.

In another recent case, USD 600,000.00 was frozen in the fraudsters’ accounts. The companies involved in this case are Waldmann Asset Management, Doyle Hutton Associates and Cardell Limited / Cardell Company Limited. Account holders are the companies Cardan Limited, Cedan Limited, Hamtron Limited and Mutual Hope Limited.

Investment Fraud News

Investment fraud – Latest reports and news

Founder of illegal payment service Liberty Reserve pleads guilty

The 42-year-old Arthur B. pleaded guilty to having laundered more than 250 million US dollars for his client. Liberty Reserve, according to investigators, handled 55 million transactions. According to investigators, money from investment and credit card fraud, identity theft and hacking offences are said to have been laundered.

Suspected gang-based investment fraud

Gérard Lhéritier is bankrupt. One of the most important collectors of manuscripts and autographs in the world is bankrupt. He is accused of gang fraud. Together with his sellers and agents, he has allegedly caused damages of 850 million Euros. 20,000 victims are now preparing their class actions.

Lawyers requested tape recordings of all testimonies in the S&K trial

In the opinion of the defence lawyers of the “S&K” founders Stephan Schäfer and Jonas Köller, the provisions of the German Court Constitution Act and the Criminal or Civil Procedure Code are not sufficient. Since the trial on investment fraud will probably take several years, they argue, one must be able to fall back on tape recordings. This is the only way to classify the countless statements and interrogations.

Defendant makes his first statement in the trial “Frankonia investment fraud

Alleged investment fraudsters have defrauded about 25,000 customers with real estate funds as financial advisors. The so-called “Frankonia trial” is taking place before the regional court in Würzburg. This is the first time that a defendant has spoken out. Although he had known of irregularities, he blamed his co-defendants. Investors were deprived of a total of 51 million Euros.

Five men arrested after investment fraud

The suspects arrested by the police are accused of having committed investment fraud on a commercial and gang basis.  The persons involved are said to have also used social networks to present the opportunity to double the investment amounts through off-exchange trading with the company BerlinInvest. The damage is said to amount to 1.5 million EURO.

Investment fraud with loss of millions

Defendants are said to have lured with promises of high interest rates. The interest paid out apparently came from the capital of other paying customers. The damages are said to amount to 2.7 million euros. According to the public prosecutor’s office, they allegedly made the clients believe that the deposits were secured by mortgages in the double-digit millions and a bank guarantee from Credit Suisse Bank in Switzerland. In fact, the money had probably not been invested.

Investment fraud trial – Infinus

The fraud scandal of the Dresden-based Infinus financial group has now begun to be processed under criminal law. Six managers of the partially insolvent group of companies have been held accountable at the Dresden Regional Court since Monday for professional gang fraud in a particularly serious case and investment fraud. According to the public prosecutor’s office, the managers operated a so-called snowball system and defrauded about 22,000 investors of about 312 million euros. The defendants’ lawyers deny this.

Insolvency Göttingen Group

Eight years after the bankruptcy of the Göttingen group, the criminal investigation of the billion-euro insolvency will soon come to an end. The insolvency of the company was one of the biggest financial scandals in Germany.

Investment fraud in the Bamberg area

In the Bamberg area two men are said to have committed investment fraud on a large scale. According to the Public Prosecutor’s Office in Hof, two men are said to have defrauded investors of over 8 million euros as members of the board of directors of a public limited company.

Investment fraud – prison sentence for lawyer from Kulmbach

The Regional Court of Hof has ruled.  A lawyer from Kulmbach has been sentenced to a long prison term. A fraud is said to have taken place in connection with solar parks in Germany and Romania. Investors were promised the prospect of high yields from the production of green electricity.

Authorities investigate nationwide against investment fraudsters in the gambling sector

Suspects are to have looked for investors particularly in Bavaria and in Switzerland purposefully, who invested then high sums in company shares of Czech gaming houses and in on-line gambling portals.

Postbank sued for investment fraud

Postbank is threatened with legal action by 30 investors from Schleswig-Holstein. They have invested a total of 3.4 million euros in closed-end funds. The lawyers of the affected investors fear that the deposits are lost.

Damage caused by white-collar crime has almost doubled

Economic crime in Saxony-Anhalt has increased significantly in the past year. The damage was approximately 110 million euros. At the same time, the number of offences increased by about 37 percent to 1809 cases.

Investment fraud: losses up to EUR 35.000,00

Investors are said to have been cheated with high-risk investments. During the ten-year term of the investment, the money should double. The collected capital should allegedly be used to buy cheap scrap real estate. These should then be redeveloped to resell them profitably.

“Germans can’t handle money”

The Federal Association of Consumer Centres (VZBV) has announced that eight out of ten households have an “investment product that does not meet their needs”. 600 consultations from six consumer centres in Germany were evaluated.

10.000,00 EURO lost to the investment company

The public prosecutor’s office accuses the defendant, who has a number of previous convictions, of having defrauded at least 130 victims in a snowball system over two years from 2005. A witness testified that she had taken out a loan of 10,000.00 EURO to invest in the system.

Europe-wide active fraud gang blown up

So far, the investigators have registered seven injured parties in the cash flows in the Wuppertal area alone, with damages amounting to over half a million euros. The victims of the fraud were offered supposedly lucrative investments: Taurus Equity, Empire Investment, Finkelstein West Asset or Guthmann Group.

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