"Vyas operated with a ‘tried and tested’ technique to carry out fraud."
Fraudster Keyur Vyas, aged 32, of the Isle of Dogs, East London, was jailed for six-years-and-one-month for conning several women he met online.
Vyas was jailed on May 1, 2019, at Kingston Crown Court on four charges of fraud.
He sweet-talked the women into sending him more than £600,000 by pretending to be in a relationship with each of them. Vyas persuaded them into investing their money in fraudulent companies.
Vyas’ fraudulent activities were investigated by the Metropolitan Police’s Central Specialist Command. The investigation began in October 2014 when six women were involved.
Between 2014 and 2017, Vyas befriended the women online and pretended to build a relationship with each one.
He wined and dined them before tricking them into believing he was affluent and working in the finance industry.
Once he gained their trust, the six women were encouraged to invest their savings in various business ventures for a large return.
However, the ‘business ventures’ did not exist. The recruitment agent used the money for gambling instead.
The fraudster would pressure them into investing more money on the promise that they would get it back.
Vyas even used fear tactics when they questioned when they would get their money back. He warned them that going to the police would mean that they would lose their ‘investment’.
The six women began reporting their concerns when they finally failed to get their money.
Detective Constable Andy Chapman said:
“Vyas operated with a ‘tried and tested’ technique to carry out fraud.
“He used the trust he had gained to get them to invest in non-existing companies and went as far as having fake contracts drawn up with outlandish conditions.
“Vyas used the relationships to get their money.
“He was selfish and cruel by emotionally involving them to con them out of a total of almost £640,000.”
“Unfortunately, we see cases like this fairly often and my advice to anyone in an online relationship whatever the nature is never to send personal details or money to someone who you have never met in person.”
In March 2019 at Kingston Crown Court, the fraudster pleaded guilty to four charges of fraud by false representation, with another two charges remaining on file.
The total loss for all the charges including the two left on file amounted to almost £809,000.
There have been a number of cases in which a person has pretended to be someone else online and have persuaded victims to invest in non-existent business ventures.
It is an issue which can have a huge effect on the victim.