UK Grants.org — Scam website/company
There are other complaints elsewhere on this website about this scam company but I want to give you more detail so you can be aware of what can happen. READ IT ALL CAREFULLY!
1. I don't know how UKGrants got wind of our interest in obtaining a grant in the first place. We never contacted them, we didn't even know about them, we applied to a bona fide company called BizBritain, then a short while after, THEY (UK Grants), contacted US! I do not believe that BizBritain have done anything wrong or are connected with UK Grants in any way. However I do have issues (which I have taken up with BizBritain) about how they communicate with prospective clients.
2. After the initial contact UK Grants went through a number of different domain-named email addresses which I give below:
This is all to muddy the waters. The last two are not even websites, they are just set up to send and receive emails. The numerous emails had various signatures, no doubt to make it look like we were dealing with a large company with numerous employees. However the last email was signed, rather cheekily, by 'Daniel Thorn'. When you consider that the person behind the website, the company, and the email addresses is called Kieran Daniel Thornton... well you can see what I'm getting at.
The payment (of a £175 'setup fee') to UK Grants was made as a result of an invoice attached to an email. The invoice was in the name of 'Global ID Solutions Ltd' which is registered at Company House and has Kieran Thornton as its' sole Director. The bank details for the internet or telephone banking transaction (which the invoice insists on) are:
Sort code - 08 71 99
Acc no - [protected]
On phoning the Co-op Bank, I was told that although they are aware of this, the Sort Code is not theirs, but that of:
APS Financial Ltd
London SE1 2QG
Once again, APS Financial are a bona fide organisation and are not doing anything illegal as far as I am aware. However the account they are or were running has been or is still being used to receive the proceeds of crime. I have made APS Financial aware of my concerns but have never received a reply from them. At the time of writing this I awaiting a response from the Financial Ombudsman but I'm not holding my breath.
3. Action Fraud. Some people call them 'N0-Action Fraud' I can quite see why. In July of 2014 the Guardian published an article about UK Grants in which they stated that they had tracked Thornton down to Thailand, where he seemed to be living the life of Riley on his ill-gotten gains and bragging about it on Facebook. The article concluded by saying that they had passed on their findings to Action Fraud. That was around the time when I was submitting my first report to Action Fraud. The trail of time wasting and incompetence demonstrated by Action Fraud is truly amazing and there isn't room to detail it all here. Suffice to say that in exasperation I finally penned a letter to Cmdr Stephen Head, the officer in charge of Action Fraud. He passed it to his subordinate, D.C.S. Dave Clark, Head of the Economic Crime Directorate. Around a month ago I got an apologetic letter from him, in which he pledged to "follow this letter with detailed findings when I have them and in any event by follow up before April 1st". Maybe he meant April 1st next year, because I'm still waiting.
PLEASE DONT GET CAUGHT OUT BY THIS:
Business Loan Companies don't ask you for Setup Fees - if they do, smell a rat!
BE WARNED, IF YOU DO FALL FOR IT, THE FORCES OF LAW AND ORDER CANT HELP YOU!