UK man pleads guilty in US to role in investment scam

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Federal prosecutors in western New York say a man from the United Kingdom has pleaded guilty to being part of an international boiler room operation that scammed 250 investors out of nearly $3 million.

The U.S. Attorney's Office in Buffalo says 47-year-old David Cole of Coventry, England pleaded guilty Tuesday to conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

Prosecutors say Cole participated in a scam operated out of Barcelona, Spain, that bilked investors in the UK and Canada to buy "nearly worthless shares of restricted stock at severely inflated prices."

Some of the investments were funneled through a bank account in western New York before being sent to overseas accounts controlled by 12 members of the operation.

Cole faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine when he's sentenced in February.

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