Advance Fee Fraud

What is advance fee fraud?

Forbes Solicitors criminal defence team have extensive experience in many high value and high-profile advance fee frauds including those involving an international and cross border dimension. Typically, prosecutions have involved trading in prime bank instruments or bank trading high yield investment programs with associated allegations of the taking of significant advance fees before trading may begin. If you are under investigation for advance fee fraud contact our specialist fraud solicitors on 01772 220 022 or make an online enquiry.

Advanced fee fraud is an offence where an individual is promised that they will receive a substantial amount of money in exchange for making an advanced payment or investment. However, the money promised is not delivered. This offence is sometimes referred to as an advance fee scam or advance fee fraud scam.

Types of advance fee frauds include but are not limited to:

  • Inheritance fraud - a wealthy relative has passed away and you have a large sum of money left in the Will.

  • Online dating scams - meeting a person on an online dating website who will ask for money to be sent with the promise of returning with no intention to.

  • Lottery scams - a person is told that they have won the lottery however for the funds to be released, a payment is required.

  • Career opportunity scams - job opportunities advertised with a fee to access more information.

What happens during an investigation into advance fee fraud?

If you have been arrested on suspicion of advanced fee fraud or are under investigation, it is vital that you contact an experienced fraud solicitor as soon as possible. Often, we come across individuals who have had their identity stolen or bank account hacked and used to commit advanced fee fraud. If you are asked to attend a police interview or attend the station for a chat, it is crucial to have a solicitor present. Your solicitor will request access to all the information available to build a strong case for your defence.

During an investigation, the police can make a request for a search warrant in order to search your home or your workplace for evidence to use against you. Family and friends could also be investigated. The police may also freeze your assets which could make things difficult if you have a family to support.

What is the sentence for advanced fee fraud?

What is the sentence for advanced fee fraud?

The consequences of advance fee fraud mean that if you are convicted of this offence, you could be facing a lengthy prison sentence of up to 10 years imprisonment or a large fine. Due to the seriousness of the crime, advance free fraud cases are often tried in the Crown Court.

Any conviction will remain on your criminal record for a specified period of time dependent on the sentence you receive.

When sentenced you may also receive an ancillary order, this could be in the form of a restraint order, reparation order, financial reporting order, confiscation order, disqualification from acting as a director in the future or you may be required to compensate the victims for their financial losses.

When sentencing, the judge will consider the level of remorse the defendant shows, any previous convictions, your character and personal circumstances, whether identity fraud was involved, and the amount of money involved. Disabilities and mental illnesses or disorders will also be considered when sentencing.

If you are guilty of advance fee fraud and enter a guilty plea early in proceedings, you could reduce the sentence by up to one third. The later you leave it to enter a guilty plea, the less likely you will be to have your sentenced reduced.

If you are found guilty, this will go on your criminal record for a specific amount of time dependent on the seriousness of the matter and the length of the sentence which could have devastating effects for any future career prospects.

Why choose our fraud defence solicitors?

Why choose our fraud defence solicitors?

Our criminal defence team provide expert legal fraud defence advice and representation throughout the country to those suspected of or charged with fraudulent trading. We have many years of experience in representing clients who have been the subject of such investigations. We are a dedicated and expert firm of specialist fraud defence lawyers with an outstanding reputation for the tenacious defence of cases of serious fraud and serious crime.

Our fraud solicitors are members of the Specialist Fraud Panel and Series Fraud Association and are able to conduct the provision of advice and representation in fraud defence, either on a private fee-paying basis or through public funding through Legal Aid.

How can our fraud defence solicitors help you?

How can our fraud defence solicitors help you?

Our serious fraud team can help by providing advice and representation throughout all stages of an investigation into diversion fraud. We will work with you to achieve the best possible outcome under the circumstances. We are repeatedly asked to assist client who have already, at some time or during the course of an investigation or Court proceedings, instructed solicitors. We are used to dealing with such enquiries and advising as to the transfer of a case from previous solicitors to Forbes Solicitors.

We run a 24/7 service, which operates 365 days a year, so someone from our dedicated team of serious fraud defence solicitors is always there when you need them, providing this service nationwide. To speak to a criminal defence lawyer, call 01772 220 022 or alternatively complete the enquiry form below.

Our dedicated Advance Fee Fraud Team


Consultant, Crime

Daniel King


Partner, Crime

Craig MacKenzie

Craig Liversidge.jpg

Partner, Crime

Craig Liversidge

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