THE AWFUL COST OF FAILED INVESTMENTS
HENRY WOODS INVESTMENT
Financial schemes promotions company, Henry Woods has taken to advertising a "win-win situation" in the local press that it claims is what elderly investors "want to hear".
Unfortunately that is exactly what financially-stretched pensioners on fixed incomes do want to hear and will, to their awful cost, sometimes believe - as they did when they invested in Premier Low Risk Fund, widely advertised and sold by Henry Woods.
Last week Henry Woods' director, Donald Nott, sat in on meetings between investors in Premier Low Risk and the fund's manager, Mike Richardson, at the glitzy Guadalpin Marbella. Nott said the intention was to bring managers of the fund to Marbella so investors could demand answers about the fund's poor performance. The fund that was supposed to pay out about seven per cent has in fact only repaid small percentages of initial investments over the past two years and has substantially decreased in value. Richardson expressed deep regret at the performance of the fund and sought to link it to: - regulations introduced by the British Government to protect investors!
Unfortunately Nott's company, which probably received up to 6% percent commission on money taken, promoted Premier Low Risk as a number one fund in which to invest and many elderly investors lost heavily by investing in what was clearly perceived, due to advertising claims, as a "safe" vehicle for their retirement funds.
When asked why, if some investment companies managed a return of 10 per cent over the same period, a fund sold as "Low Risk" had been such a disaster, Nott and Richardson could only cite circumstances beyond their control. And while they may want to appear to have gone out of their way to help investors by organising such far-flung meetings, a glass of water or a cup of coffee in such glamorous surroundings does not alter the fact that many people have suffered drastically and lost homes and financial stability by believing advertisements that enticed them to buy investments that have proved to be worthless as low risk long term income producing investments contrary to the claims made in the advertisements and the marketing literature.
One said: "On behalf of my 90-year-old mother I invested a substantial amount in what I was led to believe was a safe and stable fund. After a few quarterly payments the amounts decreased until they stopped. There has been the occasional one ot two percent payout of capital. However the bulk of the money is locked in and the only way to get it out is to sacrifice 20 per cent.
"Were it not for alternative financial arrangements I had made my mother would be penniless."
Some have lost their retirement savings and had to return to the weather they hoped to avoid in their old age, as Mr Richardson will have to do once his stay at the five star Guadalpin is over. Others may have invested more cautiously, lost less, and been helped by family and friends.
But do we really call this an appropriate investment for retired folk looking for income and a low risk exposure for their hard earned life savings?? Of course not. Are the investors who were duped into parting with their money likely to succeed in a complaint to the CNMV, Spain’s market regulator or to benefit from a claim for negligence on the part of the adviser who would be able to turn to his professional indemnity (PI) underwriters to meet any such claims? In each case the answer is NO! Neither are the distributors regulated (and they are required to be if they sell investments) and neither do they carry adequate PI cover, if at all. Will Premier, the product provider pay out for the misrepresentation that has occurred or will they bury their head in the sand, return to their own personal tax haven of the Isle of Man and hang on to the profits made from this debacle. We all know the answer to that one!!
Henry Woods latest advertisement states that investor protection is imminent. Perhaps we should wait until it is effective or risk being the victims of the next commission earning flavour of the moment
PREMIER LIFE with AGENTS HENRY WOODS
----- Original Message -----
From: Nicolas & Elisabeth Rogers
To: Mr. Gwilliam Rees Jones - Investigative Journalist
Sent: Thursday, June 01, 2006 4:00 PM
Subject: Henry Woods & The PLRF
Dear Mr. Jones
Thank you for spending the time outlining the magnificent efforts you have made to bring this wretched business to a halt. The Costa-Action website is very explicit and should be visited by EVERYONE - not just the victims of fraud!
In our case we were persuaded to invest 75.000 euros in the PLRF fund largely by fraudulent advertisements placed by Henry Woods in the local press.
The I.O.M. based PLRF received our bank transfer and Henry Woods neither requested nor received any fees for introducing the PLRF product to us.
We suspect that a performance related commission was paid by the PLRF from an offshore shell company into a similar offshore company operated by Henry Woods - this to make it difficult for the authorities in both Spain and the I.O.M. to trace payments to Henry Woods for committing fraud.
The PLRF trotted out the standard excuse that Henry Woods were our financial advisors and not working for the PLRF so that the PLRF could not be held accountable for any statements made by Henry Woods.
We all know that by making this claim the PLRF can safely receive the proceeds of crime without being held responsible for the crime.
The PLRF have told us that our simple act of replying to the Henry Woods advertisement also automatically appointed Henry Woods as our financial advisor.
We have countered this claim with the argument that "Responding to deceptive claims appearing in a newspaper advertisement does not indebt, oblige or bind any party to a contract or agreement! And any contract or agreement implied or expressed by such an advertisement is invalidated by the deception contained in the advertisement".
Henry Woods were not alone in misrepresenting the PLRF fund as the PLRF themselves misrepresented Henry Woods by describing them (in writing) as professional intermediaries and then lied by exaggerating the number of people who had invested in the PLRF fund.
(As PLRF shareholders we have full access to the PLRF Register of Shareholders. Cost 30 euros!)
Because Henry Woods never received our money (and consequently can not return it) our campaign to date has focused on the PLRF and we have made numerous written complaints to the following :- The Manx Treasury Minister, Manx O.F.T, the Manx Financial Services Commission, the PLRF directors, the PLRF Manager Abacus, the PLRF legal advisors Cairns, the Manx Constabulary, the PLRF custodial bankers the RBSI Trustee Services (Guernsey) Limited, the Royal Bank of Scotland International Guernsey who provide the PLRF with loans, the Guernsey Financial Services Commission, the PLRF auditors Deloitte & Touche, the Manx Post distributors of the lies told by the PLRF and the controlling shareholder in the PLRF Premier Distribution Inc.
These bodies have been bombarded with letters, emails and copies of the Henry Woods advertisement and the false claims made by the PLRF in Spain.
We have not made any contact with Henry Woods as, up until today, we believed that their involvement in this crime was minimal as they were only a cog in a much bigger wheel. If the PLRF had not given Henry Woods access to the PLRF product - and then helped Henry Woods sell it to unsuspecting pensioners - this crime would not have occurred.
So far we have made a very big noise - but with no result so we need to join David?s Group and take advantage of your superior knowledge and fire power.
Regards - Nic & Lis Rogers
Almeria - Espana.
Tel = 950 39 20 38
email = email@example.com
At 18:04 02/06/2006, gwilym rhys-jones wrote:
From: "Gwilym Rhys Jones" <gwilymr-js"Captain Justice V" <firstname.lastname@example.org>,"Gwilym Padre" <gwilymr-js's product is based on traded endowment policies and the investment returns are pathetic especially in the euro department. How much of your investment has been lost? You do not give me a breakdown.
You relied on the professed investment expertise of Henry Woods, which is non-existent. The CDSAG has hordes of cases of HWs putting clients into funds which immediately went into retreat. Their skill at losing clients' money is uncanny.
These companies such as Premier Life mostly based on the Isle of Man know full well that they are not authorized to operate in Spain. They do not seem to care whether their business introducers, as they are usually entitled to avoid using the word agent, are legally established or not.
Your real complaint is against Henry Woods and on that basis you would have to prove missselling. One problem is that the literature as we well know is usually littered with get-out or exemption clauses. Investments can go down as well as up etc.. ad nauseam. You generally sign confirming that you have read the small print which you haven't because the nice man you trust tells you all is in order.
It is a very regular pattern.
Adviser and Investigator
Costa del Sol Action Group
DONALD Nott of the beleagured investment promotions company, Henry Woods, sat in on meetings between investors in Premier Low Risk Fund and the fund's manager, Mike Richardson, at the glitzy Guadalpin Marbella, Tuesday September, 26 .
He said the intention was to bring the managers of the fund to Marbella so investors could demand answers about the fund's poor performance. The fund that was supposed to pay out about 7 per cent has in fact only repaid small percentages of initial investments over the past two years and has substantially decreased in value. Richardson raised his hands at the meeting and expressed deep regret at the performance of the fund. He sought to link it to the Equitable Life debacle a few years ago, as well as regulations introduced by the British Government to protect investors.
Unfortunately Nott's company promoted Premier Low Risk as the number one fund in which to invest a few years ago and many elderly investors have lost heavily by investing in this "safe" vehicle for their retirement funds.
When asked why, if some investment companies had managed a return of 10 per cent over the same period, had a fund sold as "Low Risk" been such a disaster Richardson could only cite circumstances beyond his control. He demonstrated his long term faith in the fund by the example of his own investment of 100 000 euros, now worth, he said, 42 000 euros.
While Nott and Richardson may want to appear to have gone out of their way by organising such far flung meetings for the benefit of investors, a glass of water or a cup of coffee in such glamorous surroundings does not alter the fact that many people have suffered drastically, losing homes and financial stability by believing advertisements that enticed them to buy investments subsequently proven to be worthless as investments.
One said: "On behalf of my 90-year-old mother I invested a substantial amount in what I was led to believe was a safe and stable fund. After several quarterly payments the amounts decreased until they stopped. There has been the occasional one ot two percent payout of capital. However the bulk of the money is locked in and the only way to get it out is to sacrifice 20 per cent of the capital.
"Were it not for alternative financial arrangements I had made my mother would be penniless."
Some have lost their retirement savings and have had to return to the weather they hoped to avoid in their old age, as Mr Richardson will have to do once his stay at the five star Guadalpin is over. Others may have invested more cautiously, lost less, and been helped by family and friends.
But do we really call this investment?