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Adviser sentenced to four years for £1m fraud

Adviser sentenced to four years for £1m fraud

An East Sussex financial consultant has been sentenced to four years in prison for defrauding almost £1m from his clients.

John Field, 77, of Cooden, East Sussex, appeared at Lewes Crown Court on Friday (6 February), having pleaded guilty at a court hearing last month to 13 offences against a total of 36 victims, involving £988,161.

He pleaded not guilty to one further offence involving £62,783 and this case was allowed to lie on the court file without being proceeded with.

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Between 2005 and 2013 Mr Field used his position as a director of Meads Financial Consultants Limited, a firm offering independent financial advice and operating from premises in Eastbourne, to defraud people who had entrusted moneys to him for investment purposes.

The charges, authorised by the Crown Prosecution Service, followed an investigation by the Sussex Police Major Fraud Unit.

Detective constable Valerie Henwood, who investigated the case, said: “The victims, many of them elderly and all from East Sussex, are in the process of being reimbursed by company’s insurers.

“We will also be carrying further enquiries with a view to seeking a confiscation order against Mr Field later this year under the Proceeds of Crime Act.”

Meads Financial Consultants were declared in default by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme earlier this year. The firm was an appointed representative of Sesame between August 1994 and October 2013, but is now listed as ‘suspended’ on the Financial Services Register.

peter.walker@ft.com