Businessman Responds to Property Scam Claims

February 15th, 2011
Story by ROB SMYTH | Burton Mail

online newsColin Thomas, of Town Hill, Yoxall, is currently being investigated by Staffordshire Police and is also facing legal action from the Insolvency Service following the collapse of his company Ocean View Properties.

Speaking through a spokesman, he said: “In representing Mr Thomas we can say that he has always been happy and willing to assist in all actions that are being taken against developer Ricardo Miranda.

“This is obviously coupled by helping with Antonio Flores (the Spanish prosecuting lawyer from Marbella-based firm Lawbird) and the action that he is taking on behalf of investors. Mr Thomas would also like to say that he has always assisted all authorities in the UK who have asked for any information.

“The sooner the truth is out — about the actions of Ricardo Miranda in Spain, the Dominican Republic and Morocco through the actions of lawyers currently suing Ricardo Miranda on behalf of investors who have lost money paid to him — the better.”

Mr Thomas issued this response after the Mail revealed that the businessman was under investigation by the Government and the police.

His company, whose founders included a convicted fraudster, used the likes of England footballer Gareth Barry and television property expert Martin Roberts to sell luxury apartments in Spain.

It took deposits worth around £80,000 each from British investors, but much of the cash disappeared and the homes failed to materialise.

Ocean View was placed into compulsory liquidation at the request of accountants Grant Thornton in 2009.

A spokesman for Staffordshire Police said: “Following the collapse and liquidation of Ocean View Properties International Ltd, Staffordshire Police is in receipt of a number of complaints alleging fraud against the company.

“Staffordshire Police is currently considering the most appropriate way forward.”

The Insolvency Service is understood to be about to launch disqualification proceedings against Mr Thomas and other bosses of Ocean View Properties.

In a separate but related development, a class action lawsuit to recover money on behalf of dozens of Ocean View victims was filed by a Spanish lawyer in Madrid on Friday.

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