Jersey tax adviser who used client funds to buy F1 car jailed

A company director who stole over £2 million from clients’ money to buy a Formula 1 car and settle debts has been jailed for seven years.

Richard Arthur, 56, of St Martin in Jersey, falsified documents and cheated elderly clients – some of which were in their 90s – out of hundreds of thousands of pounds between 2002 and 2009. He took over £2 million from his victims at accountancy firm BDO.

The court heard how Arthur used the money to fund a formula 1 Ferrari racing car, to pay off tax bills and to make personal investments. He also led an extravagant lifestyle and enjoyed expensive holidays.

His defence said Arthur had already been living an “extravagant lifestyle” before the offences took place and the money was used to prop up failing investments or to make other investments rather than to fund his lifestyle.

He pleaded guilty to 10 counts of fraud and fraudulent activity. In one case he produced fraudulent statements to cover up his theft.

Nine further counts of fraud and fraudulent activity will lie on file after the prosecution agreed to a deal if Arthur pleaded guilty to the 10 other charges.

Sentencing him, the commissioner described it as “a really serious case of fraud” and one which was “damaging” to the integrity of Jersey’s financial services sector.

Any confiscation or compensation claim will be decided by the court in the next three months.

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