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MP’s fury as £1.7m First Solution scandal’ resurfaces—2 years on

PUBLISHED: 20:04 15 April 2009 | UPDATED: 14:17 05 October 2010

MP GEORGE Galloway launched a scathing attack on the Government this week over the victims owed £1.7 million in the First Solution money-transfer collapse still being penniless—almost two years on. Thousands of migrant workers who used the company to send cash home to families in Bangladesh lost their life-savings when the business went bust

By Gemma Collins

MP GEORGE Galloway launched a scathing attack on the Government this week as it emerged that victims owed £1.7 million in the First Solution money-transfer collapse are still penniless—almost two years on.

Thousands of migrant workers who used the company to send cash to families in Bangladesh lost their life-savings when the business went bust in June, 2007.

The Bethnal Green & Bow MP has been calling for Government help since the collapse.

he has written this week to Chancellor Alistair Darling demanding action.

2,000 CUSTOMERS

First Solution, which had its head office at the London Muslim Centre in Whitechapel, in the heart of the East End’s Bangladeshi community, still owes cash to 2,000 customers.

The Respect party chief is calling for tighter regulations over “the shadowy banking sector” including money transfer operations.

“The Government promised to help the victims—but has obstructed the liquidators in retrieving funds and making sure those guilty are prosecuted,” Galloway told the East London Advertiser this week.

“I have written to Alistair Darling to demand an explanation and action.”

NO ARRESTS

Both the Government and the police launched fraud investigations. But no arrests were ever made.

Mr Galloway still insists that there was “malpractice.”

One victim, Dulla Miah, remortgaged his house to raise funds to build a new home in Bangladesh.

The father-of-three made a transfer for £70,200 in June that year from his bank to First Solution’s account.

The money was to be transferred home. But two years later, it still hasn’t arrived.

The 38-year-old now says he is “living in hell” over the stress of losing his cash that still haunts him every day.

DESTROYED MY LIFE’

“They have destroyed my life and my family’s lives,” he says. “The Government has just left me. It has been two years and I am now losing hope.”

A deal was struck in November, 2007, for some of First Solution’s £30,000 assets, including its name and databank. It was then renamed XTL’.

The liquidators promised they had secured voluntary cash payments from First Solution directors to help pay off the £1.7m debt.

But, according to Mr Galloway, they have struggled to find out how the money was lost and retrieve the identified debts.


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