Web-based degree scam forced to fold

March 14, 2003

A multimillion-pound web-based business selling bogus UK university degrees has been closed after a four-year transatlantic investigation.

Websites for 14 bogus universities, all purporting to be operating from Enfield, Middlesex, were closed last week after court action by the US Federal Trade Commission.

Hundreds of thousands of customers had apparently purchased fake degrees over the web.

"These bogus universities were raking in millions of pounds," said Terry Neville, a councillor at Enfield Council.

The scam was discovered four years ago when Enfield Trading Standards received complaints from employers trying to follow up references.

A joint operation with the FTC found that the universities were being run through a network of companies based in the US, Israel and Romania.

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