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Life of deception Convicted UK serial fraudster targets Ireland with new public business

Timothy Ahlbeck is disqualified from acting as UK director

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Timothy Ahlbeck

Timothy Ahlbeck

Timothy Ahlbeck

A convicted UK serial fraudster branded by a judge as a “menace to financial institutions”, and who’s disqualified as director there, has just set up a public limited company in Ireland, the Irish Independent has learned.

Timothy Ahlbeck only recently escaped a custodial sentence in the UK for his latest fraud in a life of deception that has stretched back almost two decades.

That he was able to set up a PLC in Ireland continues to expose the weaknesses in the self-verification process of director and other details at the Companies Registration Office (CRO) here.

Mr Ahlbeck (38) has committed a string of offences in the UK that involved bilking unsuspecting suppliers out of tens of thousands of pounds worth of goods and services.

He has also changed his name more than once, having been previously known as Miles Prestland-Windsor, Darren Jones and Timothy Richard Skelding. He currently lives in Wolverhampton in the UK. He did not respond to requests for comment.

Mr Ahlbeck – who has previously styled himself a Duke and Lord – also falsely claims to be a medical doctor and to have worked in hospitals in the UK and the US.

Despite being initially disqualified from acting as a company director in the UK in 2011, he went on to set up more than a dozen firms there. In April this year, his disqualification was confirmed for 16 years.

The company Mr Ahlbeck has set up in Ireland in recent weeks is called Zulu Manufacturing and Retail Trading Group (Europe), whose filings with the CRO here indicate it is involved in mining.

Mr Ahlbeck has also established at least two companies in the US in recent weeks – Mucky Paws LLC in New Jersey, and M & Co Hair and Beauty USA in Arizona, California, Florida and Delaware.

Being disqualified from acting as a director in another jurisdiction does not automatically mean that a person cannot act as a company director in Ireland.

However, the CRO relies on individuals who are disqualified in another State, or their representatives, to file a form at the time of being appointed a director here that informs the CRO of any disqualification in another country.

A failure to do so means the person is deemed disqualified from acting as a director in Ireland too.

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The other purported directors of the firm Mr Ahlbeck has established here could not be verified by the Irish Independent.

Following a 2014 conviction in the UK, a judge described Mr Ahlbeck – then Miles Prestland-Windsor – as a “miserable fantasist” and an “expert con merchant”.

He subsequently changed his name to Timothy Ahlbeck and in 2019 ran for local elections in Devon. He tried and failed in court at the time to prevent the news site DevonLive from revealing his previous identity and his criminal history.

In April this year, he was handed a two-year suspended sentence in Exeter for fraud. The court heard that Mr Ahlbeck was a “very damaged young man”.

The judge said he was willing to give the fraudster an opportunity to mend his ways and gave him a “last chance”.

"You have to understand that if you ever come back to court in breach of the sentence I will send you back to prison for as long as I possibly can,” the judge told him.

The court also ordered him to undertake a rehabilitation programme. He set up his company in Ireland just two weeks ago.

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