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This Blog is dedicated to making public some of the business activities and methods of Liam Collins, David Bone Jr and their associates. In the spring of 2010, the present authors invested in Collins & Bone (C&B), who were offering an enticing 8-10% interest on the basis of buying houses for cash, renovating them and letting them out to students. We were assured that our money was secured against houses that they owned, including their own homes and the properties held by their associated company, Castle & Gatehouse (C&G). We have emails and brochures that confirm these details, as do others who invested on this same basis at around the same time. The idea worked for us for over a year, then in November 2011 they told us they were insolvent. They refused our every request for clear accounts, which led us to suspect wrongdoing. We began an investigation and then started this Blog. We found our suspicions confirmed: other investors had lost sometimes quite large amounts to C&B and its predecessor CBS, and all requests for repayment were adamantly refused. These people use and have used so many names that we found it necessary to compress them into CoBo (for Collins & Bone) and Coboco (for the whole bunch of them – there are quite a few!) Note that there is an index in the margin at the right hand side.

Wednesday, 22 August 2012


One of our readers has pointed out the similarities between the Hirst fraud case (see link below*) and Coboco’s activities. The newspapers have drawn attention to the Hirsts’ lavish lifestyle, funded by money from bona fide investors who were promised high interest rates.

CoBo’s investors should note that by the end of 2009:

1]  The CBS group of companies (directors: Mark Black, David Bone Snr, Liam Collins and David Bone Jr) had collapsed with £2 million of debt. This debt was transferred to the Collins & Bone Partnership.

2]  Nearly all CoBo’s houses were in Law of Property Act (LPA) Receivership, due to non-payment of mortgages.

3]  The partners were unable to repay promissory notes (PNs) as they became due in 2009 and were therefore technically insolvent.

However, early in 2010, CoBo campaigned vigorously to draw in new investment on the basis that they were running a hugely successful property company and that investors’ money would be secured against their ‘debt-free assets’ (as far as lenders were concerned, ‘non-existent assets’ would be more accurate!). They were so successful at raising new investment with their slick brochures and promises that houses would be bought for cash, that they were able to pay off the LPA receivers. At that time, too, Liam Collins, David Bone Jr and Mark Black flew off to Las Vegas to  party and congratulate themselves on their ability to persuade bona fide investors to hand over their cash. On their return, they continued to lease luxury cars.

Like John Hirst, Coboco seem to think that once they have been given  money, it is theirs to spend just as they please. They apparently feel no obligation at all to fulfill their side of the contract and engage in real business. They simply want to have the lifestyle and perks of wealthy businessmen without doing the work!


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