Two men who were part of a group that defrauded elderly investors have now been ordered to pay back £434,835.63 to their victims - or face more time in prison.

Kenneth Reid, 61, and Niall Hastie, 55, were ordered to pay back £18,869.93 and £2,759.70 within three months or face a further sentence of two years in prison. The two men, both from Glasgow, are already serving three-and-a-half year sentences.

Their co-conspirators Robert Ross, from Ayr,  and Stephen Wilson, from Widnes,  were ordered to pay £193,206 and £220,000, respectively, in November 2019. All of the money from the orders will be paid back in compensation to their victims.

Kenneth Reid was prosecuted by the SFO

The four men were found guilty in August 2018 along with Warrington man Ludovic Black and his brother David Diaz. The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) prosecuted each individual in relation to the activities of Manchester-based Solar Energy Savings Limited.

The group’s scam defrauded hundreds of victims over a two year period and netted £17m.

They targeted the elderly, retired and vulnerable. They used some of the money to fund an extravagant lifestyle that included buying expensive cars, and luxury overseas holidays.

The gang splashed the cash on luxury motors like this Lamborghini

At their sentencing in October 2018 all six men were disqualified from being company directors for a period of between 6 and 10 years.

The scheme involved selling and installing residential solar panels with the incentive that any extra energy that was generated could be sold by the victims to the national grid under a government feed-in tariff scheme (FiT) and provide them with an extra income.

Steven Wilson was prosecuted by the SFO

The victims were told that they would be reimbursed with up to 100% of the cost of the installation after five years so effectively it would cost them nothing to sign up.

In reality they manipulated their victims by using deceitful sales techniques, outright lies, and false guarantees of reimbursement to misrepresent the offer and maximise their sales, which led to victims losing between £600 and £35,000 each.

The confiscation and compensation orders were made under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.

Ludovic Black was prosecuted by the SFO

The order against Reid and Hastie concludes the SFO’s investigation. Ludovic Black is appealing his conviction.

Lisa Osofsky, Director of the Serious Fraud Office, said: “These men operated a sophisticated scheme to scam people out of money they had worked a lifetime to earn.

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“The SFO is committed to stripping criminals like these fraudsters of their ill-gotten gains and securing compensation for aggrieved victims. We work tirelessly to ensure that crime doesn’t pay.”