Fraudster Alistair Greig jailed for 'cruel' £13m investment lie

Alistair GreigImage source, CIARAN DONNELLY
Image caption,
Alistair Greig denied the offences

A financial services director found guilty of conning investors out of millions of pounds in one of the biggest frauds of its kind in Scotland has been jailed for 14 years.

Alistair Greig, 66, who ran Aberdeen-based Midas Financial Solutions (Scotland), fraudulently obtained £13m.

The High Court in Edinburgh heard that some investors lost their life savings.

Formerly of Cairnbulg, Aberdeenshire, then Boston, Lincolnshire, Greig funded personal investments.

These featured property, including a holiday home in Cornwall, and a classic car business.

He treated himself to Bentley and Range Rover cars, and spent lavishly on trips to Old Trafford to see Manchester United and to Cheltenham and Ascot for horse racing meetings.

Greig told his own clients and advisers that he had access to a high interest account because of his connections.

Investors were led to believe that their money was safe in secured deposits with a guaranteed return.

'Cruelly betrayed'

The court heard that some clients received payments under the scheme he ran but the cash was coming from money deposited by other investors.

Greig, who had denied committing the fraud and blamed a former business associate for the losses, claimed he felt sympathy for the victims.

He told his trial: "My heart goes out to all of them. There is nothing I can do. I have lost every single thing I had, the properties, my home, everything. I know exactly how they feel. It has happened to me."

One man told the court that as a result of the fraud he was unable to move abroad with his wife who has cancer.

Judge Lord Tyre said: "Most of all I take account of the devastating impact that this fraud has had on a very large number of people, whose trust you deliberately and cruelly betrayed.

"You knew that the money you obtained from these people was earning nothing. You helped yourself to it whenever you felt like it."

'Vast scale'

He added: "Right until the end you encouraged friends to deposit funds to maintain the pretence, even when you must have known that they would probably lose everything."

Jennifer Harrower, procurator fiscal for specialist casework, said after the case: "The scale of Alistair Greig's fraud was vast - he spent years lying to many people in order to defraud them out of millions of pounds.

"In some cases, he took the life savings of people who had worked to save for retirement. All this to fund his own lifestyle.

"This sentence is the end of a lengthy and complex investigation that required the dedication of a skilled and knowledgeable team to bring it to prosecution."

Some may now recover some of their losses through the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.