Wine scam trial reaches final verdict

A long-running trial involving a series of frauds, including wine investments, running into millions of pounds has concluded with the acquittal of the final defendant.

A jury could not reach a verdict on 52-year old Robin Grove’s role in Vintage Hallmark, which defrauded mainly Canadian and American investors of £30 million.

Fellow defendant, Richard Gunter, has already received five years imprisonment for his part in the scam in addition to more than four years for a similar wine investment scam, Vintage Wines of St Albans.

Investors were promised high rates of return over relatively short periods of time including a 50% return over 10 months from investments in Champagne and a 110% return over three months from investment in whisky.

While Grove has been acquitted, he remains disqualified from acting as a company director for a period of 15 years and is forbidden from undertaking investment business in the UK.

Written by Rebecca Gibb