Fake IBM playboy pleads guilty
Team Big Blue was big lie
A 36-year old Dutch man conned thousands of pounds out of show jumpers and horse riding fans by claiming to be the son of a big boss at IBM.
George Carlo Schouten of Finchampstead, Berkshire said his old man was helping out by sponsoring his show jumping team, a Reading court heard yesterday.
He convinced one of Britain's best female riders to join the fictional team and persuaded others to spend thousands of pounds on providing IBM-branded clothes and other kit for the team.
In fact he had no connection to IBM and was, in the words of the Telegraph, "nothing more than a stable hand with previous convictions for fraud".
Schouten conned another man out of £30,000, which he claimed would be invested in a chip company and guaranteed a return within 16 weeks.
He pleaded guilty to three counts of fraud. He used the £50,000 he scammed to fund his playboy lifestyle - hiring cars and a big house in Berkshire. He will be sentenced next month - the judge warned that a prison term was likely.
His defending barrister said he wished to repay the money and was currently working as a labourer in a stables in Sussex for £360 a day. ®