Tony Morris, founding director of The Money Portal, has been charged with defrauding nine pension funds of £52m, the fifth person to face prosecution in the GP Noble Trustees case.
Anthony James Morris of Palm Beach, New South Wales, Australia appeared before Westminster Magistrates Court yesterday to be charged with conspiracy to defraud, theft and aiding and abetting fraud.
Morris, who was returned from Australia yesterday on an extradition warrant, has been remanded in custody to appear before Southwark Crown Court on 8 April.
Morris was a founding director of The Money Portal, which was the parent company of GP Noble Trustees Limited.
Lawyers acting on behalf of Morris have issued statement in which he denies the charges.
It says: "Mr. Morris strongly denies the allegations made against him, but given the matter is now the subject of Court proceedings it would be inappropriate to comment further at this time."
The prosecution revolves around the alleged theft of £52m in two tranches: £30m was taken in August 2007 and £22m in April 2008 from nine pension schemes managed by G.P. Noble Trustees Limited and BDC Trustees Limited.
Four other men have already been charged.
IFA Quentin Russell, 53, was charged in November 2009. His trial, also at Southwark Crown Court, is scheduled for 19 September 2011.
Peter Malmstrom, an associate of Tony Morris, was charged in November 2010 with money laundering and proceeds of crime offences.
Already charged in March 2010, and subject to a separate trial are Graham Pitcher and Gary Cordell, both former trustees at GP Noble. Their trial at Southwark Crown Court opens on 3 May 2011.
The case was referred to the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) in July 2008 by The Pensions Regulator following concerns raised over the conduct of the independent trustee company G P Noble Trustees.
The alleged actions exposed the pensions of approximately 2,200 people to unacceptable risk, the SFO says.
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