Richard Rufus, a former Premier League defender, has been jailed.
He was sent to prison after being found guilty of a £15million trading scam.
Rufus, who spent his senior career at Charlton, defrauded family members and friends into giving him money while claiming to be a successful foreign exchange trader and promising returns of up to 60% yearly.
The 48-year-old boasted of making ‘colossal sums’ and pretended that celebrity like Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand were already on board to lure his victims into investing in what he convinced them was a ‘low-risk’ scheme.
It is understood Rufus used £7million of the total £15million to pay back investors in a pyramid scheme while spending around £2million on himself.
Rufus, who retired as a professional football in 2004, was found guilty following a trial at Southwark Crown Court last December of fraud, money laundering and carrying out a regulated activity without authorisation.
However, at the hearing today (Thursday), Rufus was jailed for seven and a half years.
Sentencing today, Judge Dafna Spiro told Rufus: “The victims of this fraud are haunted by your actions.
“The people who invested did so in good faith, they believed your spiel because they thought you were the real deal. You were robbing Peter to pay Paul. You were living a lie at the expense of others.”