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Expensive advice & fund performance: week in news

But Hargreaves Lansdown has retorted by pointing out that Mr Smith's fund is considerably more expensive than other funds in that sector.

5) Adviser reveals "easy" scam

A former financial adviser convicted for his involvement in a £4.5m investment fraud revealed to police officers how "easy" it was to commit his crimes.

Neil Bartlett, 53, of Delamere Road, Ainsdale, used his position as a financial adviser to defraud his friends and family, using his victims’ money to fund an extravagant lifestyle of foreign travel, top hotels and gambling.

He was recently sentenced to eight years in prison and Detective Sergeant Christopher Hawitt, of the Economic Interventions team at Merseyside Police, said that following his arrest Bartlett admitted his guilt and told police how easy it had been to commit the fraud, also offering to share the loopholes he used.

Bartlett used his employment at FCA regulated Abacus Associates Financial Services to dupe his family and friends into believing he was investing their money into legitimate funds over the course of five years.

In reality, Bartlett had changed the name of his own Santander bank account to ‘Abacus Associates Ltd’ and was receiving and spending the funds transferred by his victims.

damian.fantato@ft.com