Losses of $1.5m: man sent to jail for exploiting relationships with investors

Press Release – Serious Fraud Office
Christopher John Collecutt (57) has been sentenced to two years, two months and three weeks’ imprisonment in the Auckland District Court following a Serious Fraud Office (SFO) investigation.

Mr Collecutt, a foreign exchange (forex) trader operating under the name CFX Trading, pleaded guilty in August to three charges under the Crimes Act, including theft by person in special relationship, obtaining by deception or causing loss by deception, and false statement by promoter.

A total of 59 investors, mostly family and friends, lost approximately $1.5 million through investing with Mr Collecutt.

Mr Collecutt traded foreign currency on behalf of investors located both in New Zealand and overseas, and had been forex trading since around 2007.

Acting Chief Executive for the SFO, Simon McArley, said “Over the past 18 to 24 months, the SFO has investigated more than six of these Ponzi-type schemes, where investment advisors appear to have failed to invest funds as promised and produced false statements to disguise losses or missing money. This is the second sentencing for this type of offence this week. It should serve as a continuing reminder to approach investment decisions with extreme care. Check facts and figures, be suspicious of out-of-the-ordinary returns, get things in writing and be wary of investments based on personal relationships rather than strong verifiable facts,” he said.

The investigation into Mr Collecutt’s activities commenced in August 2011 and charges were laid in May this year.

ENDS

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