By Tom Winnifrith | Wednesday 15 February 2017
I think that makes it ouzo o'clock already, stockmarket charlatan and snake oil salesman Darren Winters, fresh from his crushing Court defeat on 1 February bankrolled by The Sheriff of AIM, has now been slammed by the Advertising Standards Agency for lying to potential investors. The judgement below is damning. We are due in court again on April 3 backing another of his victims so this is very useful indeed.
Is Winters' lying wife Tatjana now going to make good on what she told the judge last time and ( again) send me a lawyers letter. Bring it on darling! You know how much I really do want to see you in Court you scheming unprincipled monster.
The ASA Judgement reads:
Summary of Council decision:
Three issues were investigated, all of which were Upheld.
Claims about different investment trading seminars offered by WIN Investing, seen in November 2016:
a. A claim on www.wininvesting.com for a live trading course stated "For the first 60 people only. Attend the UK's number 1 trading course for just £1970 (usual price over £4,997)".
b. A claim on www.wininvesting.com for a Forex Masters seminar stated "The full seminar is now running on a reduced price of...£197 plus VAT. Choose the suitable date for you. HURRY! ONLY 2 UK SEMINARS (50 people per course)…Remember, there are just 50 places available per seminar, and I'm only doing 2 seminars - that's it. And at the price I'm charging, these places will go quick (my $3,000 US seminars sell out in days). So book a place today, or risk missing out”.
c. A website advertising a Forex Club Financial Trading Seminar, www.ukforexacademy.co.uk, featured logos stating “Business Britain Award” for the years 2006 to 2010.
d. A website advertising a Forex and Stock Market Training course, www.wealthtrainingcompany.co.uk, stated “our award winning FREE course has been named number 1 in the UK 2006, 2007 and 2008 (by Business Britain)”.
The complainant challenged whether:
1. the claim in ad (a) that the usual price of the seminar was £4,997 was misleading and could be substantiated, because they understood that the advertiser had previously sold the seminar at £197;
2. the claim in ad (b) that there were only two seminars was misleading and exaggerated the limited availability of the course.
3. the claims that the awards listed in ads (c) and (d) had been awarded to the courses they were listed against was misleading and could be substantiated.
CAP Code (Edition 12)
1. – 3. WIN Investing LLP did not think that the issues raised in the complaint would be of concern to their customers and stated that they could charge whatever price they decided for their services. They did not provide a substantive response to the points of complaint.
Ad (a) stated "For the first 60 people only. Attend the UK's number 1 trading course for just £1970 (usual price over £4,997)." The ASA considered that consumers were likely to interpret that claim to mean that for the first 60 consumers who signed up to attend, there was a genuine saving against the seminar’s “usual price” of more than £4,997. However, we had not seen any evidence to demonstrate that WIN Investing LLP had previously sold the course at such a price. We considered that the claimed “usual price” had not been substantiated and the savings claim was therefore misleading.
On that point, the ad) breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rules 3.1 (Misleading advertising), 3.7 (Substantiation), 3.11 (Exaggeration) and 3.40 (Price comparisons).
Ad (b) stated “HURRY! ONLY 2 UK SEMINARS (50 people per course)…Remember, there are just 50 places available per seminar, and I'm only doing 2 seminars”. We considered that consumers would interpret this as meaning that tickets would only be available at the “reduced” price of £197 for two seminars, and therefore places were very limited. The ad also stated “at the price I’m charging, these places will go quick” and “book a place today, or risk missing out”, which further reinforced the impression of limited availability. However, the complainant understood that the course had been regularly offered at the same price. We noted that we had not seen evidence to demonstrate that only two seminars were being offered at the advertised price. On that basis, we considered that the claim had not been substantiated and was therefore misleading.
On that point, the ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rules 3.1 (Misleading advertising), 3.7 (Substantiation), 3.11 (Exaggeration) and 3.31 (Availability).
We noted that in ad (c) the Business Britain award logos were positioned under a description of a course entitled Forex Club Financial Trading Seminar, and considered that consumers would likely understand that the awards applied specifically to this course. Ad (d) stated that the Forex and Stock Market Training course “ha[d] been named number 1 in the UK 2006, 2007 and 2008 (by Business Britain)”. As such, we expected to see evidence that WIN Investing LLP had received the listed awards from Business Britain for these particular courses. However, we had not seen evidence that the awards in question had been awarded to these individual courses. For that reason we concluded that the claims had not been substantiated and were therefore misleading.
On that point, the ads, breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rules 3.1 (Misleading advertising) and 3.7 (Substantiation).
Ads (a), (b), (c) and (d) must not appear again in the forms complained about. We told WIN Investing LLP to ensure they did not make objective claims about their courses, including price comparison claims, unless they held sufficient evidence to substantiate them.
You can read the full judgement here. Now for that Ouzo. And Tatjana where is that lawyers letter you promised. You know how much I want to see y'all in Court don't you?
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