Cheshire financial advisor sentenced for fraud


A 72 year old financial advisor from Cheshire has today (10 11 2014) been sentenced to 2 years in prison for fraud.

Chester Crown Court heard that Geoffrey Fincher, of Altrincham Road in Wilmslow, pretended to invest thousands of pounds on behalf of his clients but in fact pocketed the money.

He paid back small sums when clients queried what had happened to their money and produced false documents to show where it had been invested.

One of his clients was unhappy at the returns she was receiving from her "investment" and sought advice from another financial advisor.

This advisor became suspicious about some of Fincher's documentation and made further inquiries. The companies named had no record of Fincher investing any money with them.

Fincher told this client that he would repay some of the money he had taken from her if she would sign a document promising not to tell the authorities about the matter. She refused.

He did pay the sum of money back to her but she then began to look into the money that her parents had invested with Fincher.

It emerged that they had given him more than £75,000 over a period of 14 years, yet Fincher had no written record of the money or where it had gone.

The extent of Fincher's fraud began to unravel and the Financial Conduct Authority suspended him and his company, SK8 Financial Services, which was based in Heald Green in Cheadle, and a police investigation began.

The court heard that Fincher had been advising many of his clients for several years and was considered by many of them to be a trusted friend.

The aim of  SK8 Financial Services was to offer financial advice and to invest clients money as directed. The company had no authority to hold client's funds.

Fincher pleaded guilty to 22 charges, including fraud, theft, obtaining money transfers by deception and making or supplying articles for the purpose of fraud.

Gary Simpson,  Senior Crown Prosecutor with Mersey-Cheshire Crown Prosecution Service, has worked on the case from the beginning and authorised the charges.

He said: "Fincher cheated long standing and trusting clients out of thousands of pounds over several years.

"When his clients asked about their investments, he produced false documents to back up his criminality or offered to pay some of the money back.

"Many of his clients were elderly and some were friends but he callously took their money and used it for his own ends.

"It would appear that earlier in his career Fincher was law abiding. We may never know what made him turn to crime and ruin his name but his reputation is now in shreds and he has only himself to blame."