One of Britain’s wealthiest Indian-origin businessmen convicted in a multi-million-pound fraud case has been forced to sell his plush London mansion after being slapped with a confiscation order of 20 million pounds imposed by a UK court.
Virendra Rastogi, convicted and sentenced in 2008 after an investigation by the UK’s Serious Fraud Office (SFO) for his role in the financial trading fraud, paid 5.4 million pounds towards the confiscation order after the sale of his Mayfair home.
Mark Thompson, head of the SFO’s Proceeds of Crime Division, said, “The sales and subsequent payments to satisfy the court orders demonstrates the SFO’s commitment to pursuing the recovery of fraudsters’ ill-gotten gains”.
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“Criminals should not be able to benefit from the fruits of their crimes and the sale of the properties should serve as a timely warning to those considering committing fraud that their assets, including family homes, are not protected and remain liable to confiscation. The SFO has been pursuingconfiscation proceedings against Rastogi for nearly five years,” he said.
Rastogi’s fraud was committed to support trading on theLondon Metal Exchange through a company structure based around RBG Holdings Limited.
In August 2010, a 20-million-pound confiscation order was imposed with the total sum recovered to be used to compensate the victims of the fraud.
Rastogi had made it to ‘The Sunday Times Rich List’ as one of Britain’s wealthiest Indian-origin businessmen after earning millions in five years.
In 2008, he was convicted of conspiracy to defraud at Southwark Crown Court after the SFO found his network, RBG Resources, was a sham.
In February 2013, following an application by the SFO’s Proceeds of Crime Division, the 47-year-old was ordered toserve a further seven years in prison as a result of his failure to pay the confiscation order.
At the confiscation hearing the court found that Rastogi’s family home, which was held in the name of a trust fund, wasbeneficially his and considered it available to satisfy the order.
Litigation, which was contested by the trust fund, tosecure possession of the property, located in Orchard Court, London, was commenced in July 2013.
Control of the property was subsequently removed from the trust fund by the High Court and the sale completed this monthallowing the equity to be used to satisfy, at least in part, Rastogi’s outstanding order.
The total amount recovered from Rastogi is being used to compensate the victims of the fraud through the liquidator appointed over RBG Resources Plc.