Jae Carwardine represented Johannes Skúlason over the course of the last two years culminating in a six-week trial at Ipswich Crown Court ending on 8 June 2011 with the acquittal of Mr. Skúlason on all counts. Mr. Skúlason had been indicted on counts of fraudulent trading arising out of his role as a Company Director.
It had been alleged that Mr. Skúlason, an Icelandic national, had raised millions of pounds in investment by the use of 'Boiler Rooms.' Boiler Rooms are unlicensed brokers making unsolicited calls to potential investors whilst utilizing hard-sell tactics and providing misleading information about the investment. 80-90% of any investment was diverted from the company into those operating the Boiler Rooms.
The acquittal followed a trial after an Serious Fraud Office (SFO) investigation that lasted 6 years. Mr. Skúlason had always asserted that he was also a victim of the Boiler Rooms and had acted honestly throughout. At trial, Mr. Skúlason successfully relied upon evidence from a forensic accountant and a management consultant. Witnesses gave evidence for the defence from a video-link to Iceland and the United States.
Mr. Skúlason remains the only company director, during the course of this investigation, who has been acquitted following a trial. Other directors have pleaded guilty or provided statements on behalf of the prosecution.