Freddy David, jailed for six years for defrauding investors in his now defunct wealth management company, HBFS, is to appeal against his sentence, it has been announced.
The disgraced managing director of HBFS ran a Ponzi scheme in which he created a fake investment product in “an imaginary Bank of Scotland account”. Ultimately he stole £14.5 million in a ten-year period, and many of the victims — some of whom have been left almost destitute — were members of the Jewish community in his own congregation of Borehamwood and Elstree.
Rabbi Chaim Kanterovitz, minister of the Borehamwood Synagogue, and Rabbi Jeff Berger, who founded the Rambam Sephardi Synagogue, both gave good character references for Freddy David, who mainly used the money he stole to fund his gambling addiction. Rabbi Kanterovitz later apologised for his action, as did Simon Mitchell, the synagogue’s chairman.
David also put embezzled funds into investing in the “Let’s Meat” restaurant in Borehamwood, in school fees for his three children, and in holidays in Israel.
At Southwark Crown Court last month, the be-kippah-ed David pleaded guilty to two counts of fraud and deception and was sentenced to four and six years, to run concurrently.
Now he has appealed against that sentence, although he was only likely to serve half that time and be freed on licence.
Two subsequent hearings, of confiscation of David’s assets, and compensation for the victims, which will be paid out of those assets, are due to take place later in the year.