For the latest from the pitch sign up for our football newsletter
We have more newsletters
Former Premier League footballer Richard Rufus is facing jail having been found guilty of a £8million trading scam in which he used the names of stars to entice investors.
Rufus, 47, duped both friends and family members into handing over cash while claiming to be a successful foreign exchange trader and promising returns of up to 60% per year.
Rufus, who spent his entire playing career with Charlton Athletic, told investors the likes of Manchester United icon Rio Ferdinand was already on board.
READ MORE: Five players you totally forgot won the World Cup – from Kaka to Arsenal flop
Prosecutors said Rufus lost money "hand over fist" while using funds to pay back investors in a pyramid scheme, having appeared to maintain the lifestyle of a footballer despite his 2004 retirement.
Lucy Organ, prosecuting, told jurors during a three-week trial Rufus had enjoyed the 'trappings' of wealth while living in a large five-bedroom house on a private estate.
The former pro also drove a Bentley and wore a Rolex watch with Southwark Crown Court hearing he received £15m in total, including around £5m from the Kingsway International Christian Centre.
Rufus had denied claiming the investments used were low risk, but was found guilty of three counts of fraud, using around £2m in criminal property and carrying out a regulated activity without authorisation between May 2007 and April of 2012.
A jury deliberated for almost 19 hours before reaching its verdicts, also finding him not guilty of an allegation relating to investors he had never met.
The total value of fraud amounted to just under £8m, with Judge Dafna Spiro releasing Rufus on bail ahead of a sentencing hearing on January 12.
Judge Dafna Spiro said: "The inevitable sentence is going to be one of custody."
One investor was ex-Charlton and Chelsea defender Paul Elliott, who said he was told of the trading used by family and friends of Rufus, as well as members of his church., then received £460,000 back from a £425,000 investment. Ms Organ said the returns were paid out of conning more people into investing.
The court also heard another investor in Ronabir Deb, who said they were told by Rufus that Ferdinand had made an investment.
Alan Brazil and Matt Le Tissier agree aliens exist due to 'zig zags' in the Suffolk sky
Erling Haaland mows lawn and shows World Cup boredom in hilarious new Sky Sports advert
Hackers post porn to Robin van Persie’s 18m Facebook fans – just like Page 3 girl
- Premier League
- Rio Ferdinand
- Charlton Athletic FC
- Jurgen Klopp
- World Cup
Source: Read Full Article