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Chris Bell

Chelsea partner in forex raid denies claims

Police have appealed for victims to come forward as part of an investigation into claims that a foreign exchange trader was involved in fraud and money laundering.

City of London Police confirmed they had raided the offices, in London’s Heron Tower, of Chelsea Football Club sponsor Capital World Markets over accusations of illegality in the running of funds offered by the company that promise investors a monthly return of 5 per cent.

Ten men and three women were arrested on March 3 with police seizing computers and documents. All the individuals were questioned and released on bail.

CWM yesterday denied the allegations and said it was the “victim of an orchestrated campaign initiated by individuals motivated by personal animosity”.

In its first public response since the raids, the company claimed they resulted from attempts by “third parties” to cause trouble.

“Clients have received calls from an individual; the purpose of the calls appears to have been to raise doubt about CWM as a business. Despite requests made of the police, they have thus far failed to provide the name of a single investor who has raised concerns,” said the company.

CWM added that it had made an offer to the police to “ring-fence” customer funds and “underwrite investors”.

It said: “CWM World is a respected group of companies with a multi-million pound turnover, operating with dozens of partners in a number of countries around the world. Police raided our offices . . . as a result of allegations for which we believe there is no sustainable basis. We are not able to comment further, or provide any further details, due to the ongoing police investigation, but will continue to co-operate with their inquiries.”

Detective Superintendent Maria Woodall, who is running the investigation, said they had arrested staff to put an immediate stop to suspected, “ongoing criminality” and to prevent anyone else investing in the funds.

“Now we need anyone who thinks they have invested in this specific enterprise to get in contact and help us clarify exactly how this company has been using the funds given to them in good faith by citizens living in both the UK and abroad,” she said.

CWM FX has been raising its profile through a variety of sponsorship deals. The firm has been the “official forex trading partner” of Chelsea Football Club since January and was the headline sponsor of the CWM FX London Boat Show, where Craig Droste, its general manager and Anthony Constantinou, its chief executive met Princess Anne.

It also entered an agreement with the MotoGP team LCR Honda and Cyclone Promotions, a boxing promoter run by former world featherweight champion Barry McGuigan.