Fraud pair found guilty over celebrity investment scheme

Shinder Gangar

Awaiting sentence: Shinder Gangar

A jury at Birmingham Crown Court last week found the pair guilty of
perpetrating the transatlantic fraud, which involved luring investors by saying
Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber and Sir David Frost had invested in the scheme, when
neither had.

Alan White, 49, and Shinder Gangar (pictured), 46, were both partners in Dobb
White & Co.

Instead of receiving generous returns, investors were paid out only
‘interest’ payments generated from new clients, while the pair used the
‘investments’ to provide unsecured loans to acquaintances as well as for the
purchase of properties.

The pair were also found guilty of trying to bribe the US Attorney General to
release funds which had been frozen following an investigation into their US
accomplice, Terry Dowdell.

Gangar ­ a former member of the ICAEW, whose membership lapsed in 2003 due to
bankruptcy ­ was described as the ‘frontman’ of the operation.

White, a former member of ACCA, was the ‘administrator’ who would give
investing clients the ‘co-ordinates’ of where they should direct their cash.

Celebrities were called to court after witness accounts of how Gangar dropped
names of influential people, whom he said were investing in his scheme. Sir
David Frost and Lord Lloyd Webber both made appearances at court. Sir Andrew
said he had agreed to meet Gangar, who had invested £1.2m in his company, the
Really Useful Group.

‘He [Gangar] suggested to me that because I was a member of the House of
Lords and with my other connections there might be people who I could also
introduce to the scheme, for which I might receive some introductory commission.
I decided that this was not something I would do,’ said Lord Lloyd Webber.

Sir David told of how he was introduced to Gangar as a investor for a film
which was never made.

One of the Serious Fraud Office’s witnesses ­ Elizabeth Watson, whose family
were also caught up in the scheme ­ told the jury that Gangar had ‘impressed’
her when she first met him in 2001.

‘He seemed to be dealing with well-known celebrities and was doing well. He
gave me the impression he was a globetrotter… Gangar showed me a contract signed
by Andrew Lloyd Webber… I understood Lloyd Webber had invested in his scheme,’
said Watson.

Watson invested £400,000 in the scheme, while other members of her family put
in a further £300,000.

The pair are yet to be sentenced.

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