Thousands of horseracing fans fear they have lost their life savings following the sudden closure of a betting syndicate and racing owners club. Some members of Layezy Racing told Sportsmail on Friday night that they were staring at 'financial ruin'. As Sportsmail reported last month, former Kent police officer Mike Stanley has been using millions of pounds paid into a betting syndicate to buy and fund 23 racehorses he now owns, apparently without members' knowledge. The story sparked panic among members, with many asking for money to be repaid to them. With more than 2,000 people believed to be members of the Layezy Racing betting syndicate — and more than 2,600 also in the owners club — the total money invested is thought to be in the tens of millions. According to the private Layezy website, for which members have their own log-in, those who have invested over the past six years have enjoyed fantastic returns, the website informing them they have doubled and sometimes even trebled their original stake thanks to Mr Stanley's system for placing bets. While the average investment seems to be around £15,000, some people have paid in hundreds of thousands by selling homes, borrowing money on credit cards and using their savings. But since Sportsmail's revelations, Mr Stanley has not returned funds to some members within the 14-day rule he sets out, and he has now announced that the syndicate and owners club are closing, with 'financial experts' employed to return investments. On January 23 he responded to the original Sportsmail report by assuring his members that 'nobody should be concerned' and it was 'business as usual'. However, on the Layezy Facebook page, which lists more than 1,600 members, Mr Stanley updated members on Friday afternoon. 'As a result of recent events and media attention, the Layezy Owners Club and Betting Syndicate are to be brought to a close,' wrote 61-year-old Mr Stanley. 'I am in the process of appointing financial experts to oversee the return of investments. A further update will be provided with contact details on Monday.' Mr Stanley had already contacted Rahman Ravelli, a legal firm. On Friday, Sportsmail asked Rahman Ravelli if Mr Stanley had sufficient funds to pay back his members. A response from the firm read: 'We have no comment to make and further announcements will be made.' Layezy has a business address in Chatham, Kent, while Mr Stanley lives in Maidstone. Sportsmail understands that Kent Police are already in the process of making enquiries into Layezy, with some members asking to be put in contact with senior officers and others contacting their local MP.
Some Layezy members have contacted this newspaper in a panic to raise their concerns, citing the fact they have been paying money into a variety of different accounts over the years. So far, Sportsmail is aware of at least 10 bank accounts. It is thought at least one member has contacted the National Crime Agency (NCA) with their concerns. When discussions have started among concerned members on the Layezy website, administrators — of whom Mr Stanley is one — have blocked their ability to comment. Friday's Facebook post said that Mr Stanley had turned off the comment facility. A member who has contacted Sportsmail said a fellow member had requested to withdraw £50,000 — the monthly limit set by Mr Stanley — and was told it would take 14 days to arrive. They added that when it failed to do so, they contacted Mr Stanley, who said there was a backlog of two days and that it should arrive soon. Another said there had been no updates to the login page — where members can chart the performance of their investments — since January 15. Members want to remain anonymous but one feared the worst on Friday night. 'This could ruin me; this is going to kill me,' the member said. 'I am going to have to leave the country. I just wouldn't be able to handle it (if I don't get all the money).'
there is a long thread about this oldgit, no need for another
however this annoys me:
So far, Sportsmail is aware of at least 10 bank accounts.
Amazing how banks greedily enable dubious schemes of all kinds. It is time that they were mandated to repay all losses if they provide facilities for fraudsters.
there is a long thread about this oldgit, no need for anotherhowever this annoys me:So far, Sportsmail is aware of at least 10 bank accounts.Amazing how banks greedily enable dubious schemes of all kinds. It is time that they were mandated to repay
who puts thier whole life savings or borrows money to put in a horse racing scheme?
i can understand if you have a bit of spare cash to give it a go, but avg of £15k and someone trying to withdraw £50k.
who puts thier whole life savings or borrows money to put in a horse racing scheme?i can understand if you have a bit of spare cash to give it a go, but avg of £15k and someone trying to withdraw £50k.Madness.
Thing is , there was a poster on the other thread saying he had put in 5K and was told now worth 35K and hadn't withdrawn anything in 4 years until recently withdrawing 7K.
Key thing is what these people had actually put in. If someone put in 10K, and they were being told it was worth 70K+ the thing is, these people will actually be thinking they are owed 70K and have been relying on this money and built their minds up in unrealistic greedy figures, when effectively all they would be owed is 10K if it's actually a scam.
@Maleuk1Thing is , there was a poster on the other thread saying he had put in 5K and was told now worth 35K and hadn't withdrawn anything in 4 years until recently withdrawing 7K.Key thing is what these people had actually put in. If someone put in