A Hemel Hempstead man was tricked into making a "terrible mistake" when he unknowingly transferred his entire inheritance to a fraudulent investment firm.
The man, who is only known as David, was given £350,000 from his parents and decided to invest the large sum to a seemingly trustworthy company.
However, the firm turned out to be fraudulent company pretending to be an authorised business.
And now the scam serves as a cautionary tale to anyone looking to invest their hard-earned cash, inheritance or windfall.
"I found a company called Bruckner Ferdinand offering six per cent returns," admitted David.
"After talking to the account manager and checking their Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) registration, I agreed to transfer them £350,000.
"But after they promised me a follow-up and I heard nothing more and the FCA confirmed the firm was operating without authorisation."
In desperation, David even turned to money expert Guy Myles, who is a columnist at our sister title inews, for advice on whether he couod retrieve his lolly..
"I have made a terrible mistake and I need some help on how to rectify it," he added.
Miles responded: "I am sorry to have to tell you that this company has been created specifically to steal money.
"The firm is a clone – a fraudulent front company pretending to be an authorised business. This is part of their trick as people, rightly, assume that regulated businesses offer protections and have been scrutinised before being approved.
"I can’t find anyone who knows the people behind it and there is no trace. I think you should assume your money has been lost and, even in the event of a successful prosecution, it may not be possible to return what you have lost.
"I know it will be hard to adjust to losing so much money, but the last thing I want to say to you is that life must go on."