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Couple quizzed in £3m East London wine fraud’

PUBLISHED: 19:00 09 April 2010 | UPDATED: 15:50 05 October 2010

ANOTHER two people have been arrested in connection with an alleged £3m wine investment fraud. The Met’s Fraud Squad carried out raids at two business premises in East London last month and have already arrested six people on suspicion of money laundering

By Mike Brooke

ANOTHER two people have been arrested in connection with an alleged £3 million wine investment fraud.

Officers from the Met's Fraud Squad carried out raids at two business premises in East London last month and arrested six people on suspicion of money laundering, six people were arrested.

Now a 40-year old woman and a 53-year-old man have also been arrested on suspicion of money laundering after they attended a central London police station for interview and have been bailed to return in October.

The eight arrests, part of Scotland Yard's Operation Iceman, followed searches at the businesses and a number of home addresses in and around Docklands.

Detectives believe people were persuaded to invest in specialist wines from Australia that did not actually exist. Those targeted in the alleged scam were told that Australian wines can be 'laid down' and increase in value with age.

Det Chief Ins Robin Cross, head of the Fraud Squad, said: "People from all backgrounds are being targeted by this kind of 'investment' fraud and persuaded to invest in what appears to be a sound financial opportunity.

"We would advise those considering investing to do their research and be sure the companies or individuals they are dealing with are reputable and legitimate."

The six arrested in last month's operation, two women aged 28 and 32 and four men aged 30, 34, 40 and 65, were arrested on suspicion of money laundering and taken to an East London police station, then bailed to return in October pending further inquiries.

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