Four people are facing lengthy jail sentences after being found guilty of a £6 million travel agency fraud scam.
Christakis Philippou, 62, of Bark Place, Bayswater; Evangelia Liogka, 38, of Montpelier Place, Knightsbridge; and Timothy Entwisle, 56, of Ludworth, Dorset were found guilty of conspiring to defraud thousands of holidaymakers at Southwark Crown Court on Tuesday.
A co-conspirator, Peter Kemp, 52, had already pleaded guilty to the same charges.
The group set up five separate companies between July 2003 and August 2006, to sell holidays at inflated prices. They pocketed customers’ money before closing down and leaving them empty-handed.
Jurors took just two-and-a-half hours to find the trio guilty. Philippou and Entwisle were found guilty of all five charges, while Liogka was cleared in regards to conspiracy to defraud customers using Onshine Ltd.
All three had denied their involvement in the multimillion-pound scam, saying they had been tricked by Kemp. Liogka broke down in tears as the verdicts were given while her partner Philippou showed no emotion.
All four will be sentenced on April 17. Liogka and Entwisle were kept in custody pending surety arrangements.
Judge Andrew Goymer told Philippou the risk of him trying to flee the country “was a very great one”. Philippou was remanded in custody until the sentencing. The judge said: “He has quite substantial community ties in this country but the fact is a sentence of imprisonment is inevitable.”
Outside court, detective superintendent Russell Day, of the Metropolitan Police specialist and economic crime command, said: “The criminals benefited greatly from this scam without a second thought about their victims, which included handicapped children, honeymoon couples and people celebrating their retirement.”
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