10 arrested in fraud probe into friendly society which operated in Leeds

PAGE 2'A West Yorkshire Police office on the beat at Leeds Market...9 October 2007. See Police performance league tables story. Picture: Simon Hulme '

PAGE 2'A West Yorkshire Police office on the beat at Leeds Market...9 October 2007. See Police performance league tables story. Picture: Simon Hulme '

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Ten people have been arrested as part of an investigation into alleged fraud and money laundering at a financial services organisation which operated mainly in Leeds.

Cornerstone Friendly Society (CFS) is facing a probe by the Yorkshire and Humber Regional Fraud Team.

The society – a mutual organisation managed and run for the benefit of members and offering services including pension investments – was placed into liquidation earlier this month.

A spokeswoman for West Yorkshire Police said: “Yorkshire and Humber Regional Fraud Team are investigating alleged fraud and money laundering offences linked to a friendly society involved in pension investments that mainly operated in Leeds. All identified potential victims have been informed of the investigation.

“Ten people have been arrested in connection with this investigation and are on police bail. Enquiries remain ongoing.”

The nature of the allegations remains unclear.

According to the CFS website, the society operated since 1985.

Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, it is no longer allowed to accept new deposits, enter into any new business, or lend money.

The Financial Services Compensation Scheme said it was monitoring the situation but “cannot confirm whether it will be able to pay compensation to clients of the firm at this stage.”

The Yorkshire Evening Post was unable to contact Cornerstone for comment.

Tony Hallwood, aviation development director at Leeds Bradford Airport, who is stepping down from his role.


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