The managing director of a financial services firm is facing a lengthy jail sentence after committing £13m fraud on investors.
Alistair Greig, 66, carried out a Ponzi scam tricking dozens of individuals to place their savings in “guaranteed” high interest accounts.
Prosecutor Steven Borthwick told the High Court in Edinburgh: “In some cases these were the life savings of people who had worked all their lives and saved to create a nest egg for their retirement.”
The advocate depute said: “Instead Alistair Greig used that money as his own personal slush fund.”
Greig, who ran Aberdeen-based Midas Financial Solutions (Scotland) had denied committing the fraud but was unanimously found guilty of it and two further offences.
‘It is a conviction of fraud on a truly shocking scale.’Lord Tyre
A judge told him: “It is a conviction of fraud on a truly shocking scale”.
Lord Tyre said it was undoubtedly one of the largest frauds perpetrated in Scotland and had brought misery to a large number of people.
The judge jailed Greig, who was on bail throughout his trial, as he adjourned the case for the preparation of a background report ahead of sentencing next month.
Lord Tyre told him: “There is likely to be very little alternative to a lengthy period in custody.”
The Crown has raised proceedings against Greig for a confiscation order to clawback crime profits.
The court heard that some clients were paid out under the scheme but the cash was coming from money deposited by other investors.
But Mr Borthwick maintained that this was all part of “the big lie” told by Greig to continue his fraud.
While the money came in Greig, formerly of Cairnbulg, in Aberdeenshire, but latterly of London Road, Kirkton, Boston, in Lincolnshire, funded investments in property, including a holiday home in Cornwall, and a classic car business.
He also treated himself to high end Bentley and Range Rover vehicles and spent lavishly on trips to Old Trafford to see Manchester United and to Cheltenham and Ascot for horse racing meetings.
Mr Borthwick said: “It seemed from the outside that the scheme was working as advertised but that was also a lie and that lie helped promote and prolong the big lie told by Alistair Greig.”
“There were lies told by Alistair Greig to different people at different times over years with the same purpose – to put their trust in him so they would hand over their money.”
“He used that money for his own selfish reasons,” said Mr Borthwick.
But Greig, who had denied committing the fraud and blamed a former business associate for the losses, claimed he felt sympathy for the victims.
He also told the court that he made an attempt to take his own life with pills and a bottle of whisky and left a note naming the man he accused of being a thief.
But Mr Borthwick told jurors that Greig had made a series of false statements over the short term deposit scheme.
He told his own clients and advisers that he had access to a high interest account at Royal Bank of Scotland because of his connections.
The Crown listed a total of 165 victims of his fraud and the jury unanimously found him guilty of all the charges.
Lord Tyre told jurors: “This has been quite a long and difficult trial and in some respects .”
Sentence was deferred to the High Court in Glasgow on April 15.