Harlequin Property

If you were advised to invest in Harlequin Properties you may want to check if you should be claiming compensation

The Harlequin Property scheme was an investment venture to build over 6000 hotel and rental properties in the Caribbean and other locations.

An estimated £400m was put in by over 8,000 investors, the large majority of which came through investors with SIPPS. 

However, it’s been reported that only 200 of the proposed properties were actually built.

Harlequin Property – Mis-selling at its worst

Harlequin Property is an example of SIPP mis-selling at its worst. 

Starting with unregulated marketing companies cold calling people offering free pension reviews. Often employing high pressure sales tactics and downplaying the risks involved or inflating the returns, in order to persuade people to invest.

Not to mention the negligent financial advice some people received which saw them put their pension pots into a totally unsuitable investment scheme

Many people transferred out of valuable final salary scheme pensions without knowing they were giving up some hard to replace benefits.

Harlequin Property Investment Locations

The Harlequin Group of companies included; Harlequin Properties (SVG) Ltd, Harlequin Luxury Hotels Ltd, Harlequin Resorts (St Lucia) Ltd, Harlequin Boutique Hotel (St Lucia) Ltd and Harlequin Properties (Caribbean) Ltd.

Some of the investment locations were:

  • Buccament Bay ‐ St Vincent & the Grenadines
  • Las Canas/The Hideaway /Two Rivers resort ‐ Dominican Republic
  • The Merricks ‐ Barbados
  • The Marquis Estate ‐ St Lucia
  • H Hotel (Boutique Hotels) ‐ St Lucia and Barbados
  • Blu Hotels (Boutique Hotels) ‐ St Lucia and Barbados

Problems with The Harlequin Group 

Problems with Harlequin began to surface in 2013 with the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) looking into business conducted by the Harlequin group between 2010 and 2015.

In 2017 the SFO charged the chairman of the Harlequin Group – David Ames with 3 counts of Fraud by Abuse of Position.

Harlequin boss found guilty of fraud and jailed for 12 years

David Ames was found guilty on two counts of fraud by abuse of position at Southwark Crown Court on 3rd August 2022.

He was sentenced to 12 years in prison on 30th September 2022.

Lisa Osofsky the director of the SFO said: “David Ames committed fraud on a huge scale, knowingly exposing thousands of UK investors to losses totalling hundreds of millions of pounds.

“Diligent SFO investigators reviewed millions of documents, traced over 8,000 investor deposits and called on more than 25 witnesses, to expose the full extent of Ames’ deception.”

Compensation Claims Against Harlequin

A case upheld by the FOS in 2016 against an adviser who had recommended his client invest £48,000 in Harlequin valued the investment at just £1.

In April 2019 it was reported that the FSCS had paid out £125m in compensation claims for around 2,700 complaints relating to Harlequin and expected to receive many more.

These complaints were regarding the suitability of the advice received to invest in Harlequin and not the performance of the investment itself.

The investment is now valued at NIL.

SIPP Providers linked to Harlequin

Advisers linked to Harlequin Property

Want an expert opinion?

Whilst each case is individual, as mis-selling specialists we know to look for certain signs that in our experience indicate that mis-selling may have happened.

Our assessment is free and there’s absolutely no obligation to use our service if you have case.

Key Facts

Received over £400m in investment mainly through SIPP investors
Over £125m already paid in compensation
Investment now valued at NIL

We win more than 9 out of 10 claims

The cost of our service is 15% + VAT on the total monies awarded for a successful claim. Our cost is also priced capped at one of the lowest rates.

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Susan Stringer
Excellent standard of service. The claim was protracted substantially by virtue of opponents trying hard to not accept any responsibility for their actions and not return the pension fund. PCC kept me fully informed throughout the process, obtained an excellent result for me.They also kept chasing the opponent when little action was taking place from them. The staff were always pleasant and helpful to deal with and very encouraging when I felt my claim was doomed to failure. I can not praise highly enough
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Bill Cass
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It is possible for you to present the claim for free, either to the firm or person against whom you wish to complain or to the statutory ombudsman (Financial Ombudsman Service or Pension Ombudsman Service) or the Financial Services Compensation Scheme, whichever is applicable to your claim.