Fake adviser conned gran out of £150k

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A BOGUS financial adviser who conned a grandmother-of-four out of her £150,000 retirement pot to fund his gambling addiction is facing jail.

Ryan Burnside, 35, pretended to mental health officer Margaret Gallivan that he was investing her life savings overseas when in fact he was spending it at casinos.

Stirling Sheriff Court heard that Burnside created a “Walter Mitty” fantasy life to entice Mrs Gallivan, 62, to trust him with her wealth, lying about having large plots of land, fancy cars, and even inventing a fictitious wife and children.

He did not tell her he had been dismissed from his firm for “financial irregularities”.

Burnside, of Nettlehill Road, Uphall Station, West Lothian, admitted that from November 12, 2008 at Mrs Gallivan’s home in Henderson Street, Bridge of Allan, he pretended he was an independent financial advisor.

He admitted that he pretended to her that he would make investments on her behalf, and that he obtained £150,000 from her by fraud.

Sheriff William Gilchrist deferred sentence on Burnside for reports.