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Couple jailed over £10m fraud
3:14pm Friday 31st August 2012 in News
A husband and wife who used money from a fraudulent £10 million investment scheme to fund their extravagant lifestyle have been jailed.
John Hirst, of Millroyd Mill, Huddersfield Road, Brighouse , and his wife Linda Hirst enjoyed luxury holidays and lavish wedding celebrations in Las Vegas and Majorca with the proceeds of the Ponzi scheme.
John Hirst was sentenced at Bradford Crown Court to nine years for his part in the fraud while his wife was told she would serve two-and-a-half years in jail for money laundering.
Richard Pollett, an accountant who was found guilty of conspiracy to defraud, was jailed for six-and-a-half years.
Judge Jonathan Durham-Hall QC told John Hirst and Pollett: "What you did, and what makes this case of the utmost gravity, was brutal, callous and cruel.
"You are corrupt."
Judge Durham-Hall said: "This was an appalling and shocking course of conduct in which so many were targeted and so many have, in effect, had the remainder of their lives shattered and ruined."
The judge said those targeted by the pair were mainly ordinary, hard-working people who put their pensions and savings into the scheme after being promised huge returns and a risk-free guarantee.
Many were elderly or divorced and all were decent and trusting, he said.