The Financial Conduct Authority has charged five people with conspiracy to defraud. They are accused of promoting investment schemes in Madeira through a series of boiler room companies. The companies allegedly took about £2.75 million from 175 investors.
The five people are Michael Nascimento, Hugh Edwards, Stuart Rea, Ryan Parker (previously known as Ryan Sell), and Jeannine Lewis. The boiler room companies were First Capital Wealth Limited, Bishops of Mayfair Limited, Wallberg Dillion Reid Limited and Sterling Capital Corporation Limited.
The alleged scam took place between July 2013 and March 2014. The five were charged at Southwark Crown on 16 June 2016, following an investigation by the FCA. The trial has been set for 4 September 2017.
First Capital Wealth and the other boiler rooms
In November 2013, the FCA issued a press release about First Capital Wealth:
A suspected boiler room has had an unlimited worldwide asset freezing order placed upon it by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) after a High Court judge agreed that First Capital Wealth Limited (FCW) posed a serious risk to consumers. The hearing took place at the High Court on Friday 15 November 2013.
Between July and November 2013, according to the FCA, 27 mainly UK-based investors had handed over more than £660,000 to First Capital Wealth, for investments in a Delaware registered company called Berkeley Brookes LLC (later renamed as Atlantic Equity LLC). Berkeley Brookes promised investors returns of between 25% and 128% for investments between one and three years in a planned luxury development of 20 villas on the island of Madeira, Portugal.
Paul Murphy, writing on FT Alphaville in November 2013, pointed out that a City of London police station is just up the road from First Capital Wealth’s office. He adds that London is “cram-packed with boiler room-type operations”.
Here’s a sample of what Murphy describes as “gibberish” from Berkeley Brookes’ website:
Berkeley Brookes LLC was exclusively set up to provide innovative real estate options and new opportunities. Berkeley Brookes has been able to do this by being established as a tax efficient holding company for overseas assets. As a company we are able to provide potential high growth and serve our clients with second to none developments and provide growth quite unlike any other institution.
Berkeley Brookes have built this platform by specifically looking into mass growth potential economies on a global scale. Focusing within the Emerging Markets sector has always been considered as one of property’s most desirable options. The average individual investor or institution may feel spoilt for choice with where to locate there next opportunity.
Hugh Edwards was a director of First Capital Wealth.
Ryan Sell was a director of Bishops of Mayfair, which was dissolved on 4 June 2016. Sell was also director of Wallberg Dillion Reid, which was dissolved on 24 March 2015. As FT Alphaville’s Paul Murphy notes, the company used a borrowed name.
Stuart Rea was director of Sterling Capital Corporation Limited, which was dissolved on 23 February 2016.
So that covers Hugh Edwards, Stuart Rea, and Ryan Parker/Sell, leaving us with Michael Nascimento and Jeannine Lewis.
Tony Hetherington wrote about Michael Nascimento and his company Morgan Forbes (UK) Limited in August 2011.
Morgan Forbes was offering shares in Pearl Island LLC, a company set up to hold a piece of land at Ponta do Pargo on Madeira. According to Morgan Forbes, the land would increase in value if it received planning permissions for holiday villas. And if a developer were to buy the land and build the holiday villas.
Morgan Forbes was also offering a “fractional ownership” scheme in a hotel development.
Hetherington pointed out that Morgan Forbes had no licence to sell shares or to operate the fractional ownership scheme. The company’s lawyers, Staple Inn Partnership, had been had been struck off by the Solicitors Regulatory Authority, because of the company’s role in an illegal land scheme in Essex. Investors in that scam lost £1.6 million.
A staff member at Morgan Forbes told Hetherington that “Morgan Forbes is currently in a dialogue with the FSA in relation to its promotions.”
Here’s an archived copy of Morgan Forbes’ website:
There’s an interesting discussion on whocallsme.com featuring various references to Nascimento and his companies.
Nascimento was also a director of a company called DMD Media from 15 April 2009 to 4 May 2010. Then Glenn Jamie King became director, until 30 September 2010, at which point he resigned, and Nascimento took over his role as director.
Glenn King is a director of Oakmount Global Management Limited, Oakmount and Partners, and Centrium Capital Markets Ltd. REDD-Monitor wrote about these companies in July 2015. A month later, King’s solicitors wrote to REDD-Monitor with an “Urgent notice of intended legal proceedings”. You can read Meaby & Co’s letter here.
Nascimento is an Arsenal fan. Here he is posing with a somewhat bemused looking Arsene Wenger in January 2015:
Jeannine Lewis was a director of Goldberg and Reed Limited. On 9 February 2016, the company was dissolved via compulsory strike off. Here’s a screenshot of Goldberg and Reed’s website, archived on 26 June 2014:
On 7 April 2014, “Matt” left a comment on REDD-Monitor complaining that he had been cold called by Goldberg and Reed. A week later, “Anon” told us that “‘James Abraham’ is one of the con artists in Goldberg and Reed”.
On 23 April 2014, REDD-Monitor received the following email from Jeannine Lewis:
Date: 23 April 2014
Subject: Misleading comments on website
Dear Mr. Lang,
It has come to our attention of two comments on your website which are misleading and libelous. We would be grateful if you can delete these comments from your website.
The two in question are as follows:
(# 26) 7 April 2014 at 7:26 pm
Quick update on Spencer & Elstein that I have just added to the discussion on teh Carbonex SARL thread. As Mike states above they are a scam – they have shut up and moved out from Tower42, Old Broad Street. In their place, are a company that seems to know a bit too much of my personal dealing with S&E, called Goldberg and Reed (http://www.goldbergandreed.com/about.html) who cold called me last friday – incorporated in March 2014 … rat very much smelt with these.
(# 28) 15 April 2014 at 5:34 pm
‘James Abraham’ is one of the con artists in Goldberg and Reed. 5 Harbour Exchange. London. E14 9GE.
Please note that the comment (# 26) by Matt seems to associate our company Goldberg and Reed Limited with Spencer & Elstein. We are noting to do with Spencer & Elstein, and the text also suggests that we are a scam company. We are nothing to do with scams. We are a real trading company dealing as a Diamond and Pearl wholeseller – as mentioned on our website. We have nothing to do with Carbon Credits and we do not cold call.
(# 28) by Anon suggests that on of our consultants is a con artists and mentions our company name and address. These coments are misleading and libelous. We would be grateful if you could delete both comments.
Mrs. J. Lewis
Goldberg & Reed Limited
T: +44 (0)207 517 6030 . F: +44 (0)207 517 6001
5 Harbour Exchange Square . Canary Wharf . London . E14 9GE . United Kingdom
On 26 June 2014, “Max” left a comment that included an email from Goldberg and Reed.
In response, I pointed out some of the usual red flags: cold calling; a recently registered company; a website that gives no information about the company; and a brochure that states that “Goldberg & Reed Limited is not authorised or regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.”
I compared an investment in Goldberg and Reed’s diamonds to an investment in a second hand car sold by Del Boy:
On 8 August 2014, REDD-Monitor received the following email from Linton Slater, Goldberg and Reed’s new director:
From: Info firstname.lastname@example.org
Date: 8 August 2014
Subject: Removal of Post
Dear Mr Chris Lang,
We have previously written to you to take off comments on your website and you have failed to do this. Since then additional comments including one from you have been added to the thread. Please note that the comments are false and misleading and therefore libellous. The comments are also defamatory to individuals and therefore could constitute deformation of character.
Our Solicitors have instructed us to request you delete the thread.
Below are comments made by individuals and we will clarify the points made by each of them in red and are expecting all of them to be deleted with immediate effect.
You may believe you are a champion of free speech, but with free speech comes responsibility and liability. Please also note that you also state you will correct mistakes or mis information and therefore the comments made about individuals and the company Goldberg and Reed are incorrect and therefore should be deleted:
Anon – (# 28) 15 April 2014 at 5:34 pm
‘James Abraham’ is one of the con artists in Goldberg and Reed. 5 Harbour Exchange. London. E14 9GE
OUR RESPONSE: James Abraham was a consultant for Goldberg and Reed, he no longer works for the company, to suggest he is a con artist is defamatory. All our consultants and employees are vetted and have years of experience. This comment should be deleted.
Max – (# 37) 26 June 2014 at 5:53 pm
Just been contacted by Goldberg and reed.
Please read below;
Further to our telephone conversation, please find attached as requested, our brochure about precious gems and our terms and conditions of business.
We work with experts in the market place to source diamonds and pearls at lower than wholesale prices. This enables us to offer clients a greater choice catering to individual client needs at significantly below high street prices.
All our inventory of diamonds will be fully certified by the International Gemological Institute (IGI) or by The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) or by the Diamond High Council of Belgium (HRD). Our pearls are fine pearls and gem pearls, and are certified by an independent expert organisation.
All our gems are sold with a written valuation provided by a reputable Hatton Gardens valuer established for more than thirty years.
As, discussed, I shall be contacting you on 30th June at 3:00pm. Should you have any questions please feel free to visit us by appointment or our website http://www.goldbergandreed.com or contact me directly for further information.
Their address is 10-16 Tiller Road, Canary Wharf, London E14 8PX, United Kingd
Please let me know your thoughts if anyone has come accross them
OUR RESPONSE: The contents of our brochure, website and other literature are for individual information only and protected by copyright and therefore should not be relisted on public domains. This comment should be deleted.
Chris Lang – (# 38) 26 June 2014 at 9:41 pm
@Max (#37) – Thanks for the comment. Goldberg and Reed’s diamonds look about as safe an investment as a second hand car bought from Del Boy.
OUR RESPONSE: We are a legitimate UK Business and have been have followed and complied with guidance and legislation from UK Trading Standards. To suggest we are selling diamonds as an investment is in fact incorrect and misleading as we clearly state that we are a wholesaler in diamonds and pearls and do not offer products as investments. To compare us to Del Boy is again defamatory. This comment should be deleted
Here are some of the steps to take to check whether a company looks legitimate (or not, in this case):
1. Goldberg and Reed cold called you. No reputable company would phone you with financial advice.
We do not cold call we obtain leads from reputable sources and have a strict company policy regarding this practice which is We do not do it. It is an illegal activity. This comment should be deleted.
2. Look up the company on duedil.com. Goldberg and Reed was registered in March 2014. The company has one director, Jeannine Lewis, who retired in May 2014. She seems not to have been replaced.
If you are going to comment on directors resignations and appointments we recommend using Companies House as your only source of information as other sites may not be up to date. A new director has been appointed.
3. Check out the website on who.is. Goldberg and Reed’s website was registered under the name “David Jones” in March 2014. A search for “David Jones” and “Goldberg and Reed” brings up nothing of interest.
When you conduct a domain registration check up you should see that the domain is registered to Goldberg and Reed. David Jones was a marketing consultant we used to arrange the domain registration and he used his name as one was required.
4. Goldberg and Reed’s website provides no information about the people behind the company.
The website is designed to show the products we sell not the people at the back office end. All information regarding Directors etc are available on Companies House.This is correct we are not and do not suggest we sell financial services or advise and recommend in any way.
6. Last year the Financial Conduct Authority held a conference on financial crime. FCA’s press release about the conference includes this statement (emphasis added):
“Current investment fraud concerns for the team include: pension liberation fraud; inheritance fraud; rare earth metals; diamonds; carbon credits and fraud relating to overseas land and property.
This does not relate to us and the reference to diamonds is for coloured stones, we only sell clear diamonds and Argyle Pinks.
7. In January 2014, the BBC ran a story under the headline, “Boiler room scam: Cold-callers promote diamond fraud”.
My advice would be to report Goldberg and Reed to Action Fraud:
This does not relate to us and advising persons advise on reporting to Action Fraud without evidence and information or speaking to us directly or researching our company properly is totally unacceptable and inappropriate. Have you taken legal advice on this?
JeanetteG – (# 39) 26 June 2014 at 11:24 pm
Goldberg and Reed.com are most definitely disreputable. They have a history of connections with fraudulent business. I was introduced to Michael Nascimento, announced as the MD for this company and was previously MD for Morgan Forbes which is currently under FSA investigation. See link http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/news/article-2093086/TONY-HETHERINGTON-This-Acropolis-shakier-Greeces-economy.html.
OUR RESPONSE: Micheal Nascimento is not the MD of Goldberg and Reed. This information can be found on Companies House. Again this information is inaccurate and should be deleted.
Jeannine Lewis is also still working for this company as I have personally met her in the last few days. The office is not much better than a shack. Young people are exploited and made to work long hours for very low pay with no drinks provided. Doubt if anyone lasts long enough to actually get paid. This is a backstreet outfit. Otherwise don’t know much else about this business. Do your homework first before becoming involved in anything.
OUR RESPONSE: Jeannine Lewis works on a consultancy basis and has nothing to do with the running of the company. The office facility is a well used, well run establishment and there is also a cafe which is available to all. Companies do not have to provide food and drink as part of the office set up. Please also note we always look after our staff and the comments made above are misleading and one can only assume from a disgruntled ex member of the team.
bob ilori – (# 42) 28 June 2014 at 5:03 am
My 17 soon to be 18 in September daughter has just started Telesales!! for ‘Goldberg and Reed’..she seems to be enjoying the work and I believe she made her first “deal” today. .I am worried she is being scammed as they have taken her on a months probation promised her £60 a week for food and transport and of course they have done a brilliant job promising a highly lucrative career to a young lady. Hook line and sinker, I think the saying goes. Is there anybody out there that has worked for this “firm” and can advise me on what to expect. .Many Thanks. .
OUR RESPONSE: We have no member of staff which resembles this person. Our youngest member of staff is 22 years of age.
Vivian – (# 54) 5 August 2014 at 6:49 pm
“Look up the company on duedil.com. Goldberg and Reed was registered in March 2014. The company has one director, Jeannine Lewis, who retired in May 2014. She seems not to have been replaced.”
The company is still into the same business guys and Jeannine Lewis is the HR head there.
OUR RESPONSE: This information is totally incorrect Jeannine Lewis has been replaced by a new director; she works on a consultancy basis only. She is not responsible for HR and does not interview staff at all as a person in charge of HR would be responsible for.
Wendy -(# 55) 5 August 2014 at 6:56 pm
This is for those who mentioned about Goldberg and Reed. website http://www.goldbergandreed.com
They are a fraud company who exploit youngsters and make them work long hours. Jeannine Lewis still works there and is part of this whole fraud system. The main person is a guy called Pedro, although I doubt that this is his real name. They have a number of fraud businesses which also includes a site called http://www.thisiswealth.com.
I know people who have worked there and have not even received their payment. Do not get lured by their website — they are simply out there to make some quick money and exploit people.
OUR RESPONSE: Goldberg and Reed is nothing to do with Thisiswealth.com. It is run by a completely different company. We are not involved in fraudulent activities and have never been involved in activities relating to fraud. Any members of staff who work for the company Goldberg and Reed get paid as per their personal contract and any persons who no longer work for the company have also been remunerated on leaving. This comment should be deleted.
As you can see we have answered every point made or addressed in the thread. It seems that everything posted about Goldberg and Reed is false including your own research. We suggest you remove this thread and all posts referring to Goldberg and Reed in order to avoid this matter being taken further.
Failure to do this will result us in requesting the identity of the individuals that made the defamatory comments and their IP addresses so we can peruse them in a court of law and should the posts not be deleted as requested your website will become party to court proceedings and removed from search engines. Please note this advice has been given to us by our retained Solicitor.
Mr. L Slater