A DISGRACED businessman who used sex, lies and fraud to fund a lavish lifestyle with other people's money has been jailed for nine years.

Guy Brudenell, 44, charmed women into handing over tens of thousands of pounds by having affairs with them after contacting them through the Sugar Daddy dating website, said Nick Dry, prosecuting.

He claimed to one woman with whom he had sex that he had bowel cancer, and dropped another when he realised she didn't have more money to give him.

He continued offending until just hours before a court appearance for other offences.

Brudenell, formerly of Nawton, near Helmsley, and Lammas Court, Scarcroft, Leeds, was a renowned Yorkshire businessman before the economic crash. He was declared bankrupt in 2009 and jailed in 2013 for fraud.

He once took part in a charity sky-dive with the Archbishop of York, and lived in a £1.3 million country mansion in Nawton near Helmsley, with its own cricket pitch, tennis court, greenhouses, summerhouse, cottage and terrace on its 7.62 acres.

One of the women Brudenell had an affair with and who tracked him down to his house and confronted him, and told Judge Harold Crowson in a victim impact statement: "I feel sexually violated by him," and: "It frightens me there are such terribly dishonest people out there."

Another said: "Guy Brudenell has had a horrible detrimental effect on my life and still does to this day."


York Press: Yorkshire based businessman and entrepreneur Guy Brudenell (11085242)

Guy Brudenell, before his empire collapsed


The former Ryedale businessman also operated a building company illegally, defrauding people over house improvements, and was paid cash for arranging for the home of one of its clients to be turned into a brothel while its owners were on holiday, though the project didn't go ahead. One family was left so poor they had difficulty visiting their teenage daughter who was seriously ill in hospital.

In their victim impact statement, the family said: "He knew our situation and continued to take our money. He even hassled me for money on the morning he was sentenced."

Othershad to spend tens of thousands of pounds and come close to bankruptcy to sort out the mess he left them in.

Teesside Crown Court heard Brudenell and his girlfriend between them spent the money on high living which included an exclusive Leeds apartment, massages, health and beauty treatments, topless dancers, a trip to the Monaco Grand Prix, a stay in a top London hotel and purchases at upmarket department stores.

Tracked down by North Yorkshire Police and brought to court to face justice for a £1.24 million series of frauds on business friends, he persuaded Judge Harold Crowson to grant him bail so he could "put his affairs in order". Given bail, he continued his crimes. The last was committed just hours before he was jailed for the first time.

Sentencing him for the second time in just over a year, Judge Crowson told him: "Your every act appears to have been calculated to fund the lifestyle you saw as your entitlement.

"I don't think any sentence I can impose will truly reflect the harm (you have caused)."

Brudenell pleaded guilty to eight charges of fraud including one of defrauding the trustee overseeing his bankruptcy, one of creating a forged email which he used in one of the frauds, one of fraudulent trading and one of breaching bankruptcy restrictions by operating Hampton Rock building company. Many of the offences were committed whilst on bail. Other charges which he denied, including three alleging he had relationships with three more women, were left on file.

Altogether the frauds totalled £141,000, £66,000 which he conned out of the women he befriended and others and £75,000 from the Hampton Rock fraud.

"All of it going on a lavish lifestyle something those victims can never have dreamt of," said the judge.

Brudenell was jailed for three years and eight months, to be served after the five years and four months Judge Crowson gave him in June 2013 for the £1.24 million frauds, giving a total of nine years. He was given a ten-year financial reporting order under which he must tell police all about his financial and business affairs anywhere in the world and any changes in his name or permanent address every six months.

His barrister Alasdair Campbell said: "There is little mitigation in respect of each offence which I can offer," of the £144,000 frauds. He said of the "hundreds of women" contacted by Brudenell through the Sugar Daddy website, only four had said he had defrauded them.

He quoted people he said were satisfied customers of Hampton Rock and claimed the business had not been designed as a fraud, though it had become one because Brudenell had taken on too much work. "There is an argument he became a victim of his own success," said the defence barrister.


York Press: Det Insp Ian Wills, who is leading the investigation

Detective Inspector Ian Wills: Brudenell is a "predatory fraudster"

Detective Inspector Ian Wills who heads North Yorkshire Police’s Financial Investigation Unit, said today: “Brudenell is a predatory fraudster who views every encounter and meeting as an opportunity to commit fraud. He has targeted people indiscriminately for many years.

“The evidence revealed that he regularly lied to family, friends and business associates about his need for funds and how they were to be applied. Between 2009-13 he was a prolific user of a dating website where he targeted women for sex and money.

“He was latterly offering bogus investment deals with the payments offsetting previous debt and funding his lifestyle. His offending continued up to the very morning he was imprisoned in June 2013.

“The tactics Brudenell used to delay repayment were callous, claiming to some that his girlfriend had cancer and latterly that he himself had bowel cancer.

“As in the previous case, he was also forging emails to encourage investment or delay repayment – all whilst on bail for similar matters. The sentence today should send a clear message to those who seek to deceive others.”      


Timeline of a fraudster

October 2009 - Made bankrupt.  The bankruptcy was discharged in 2011, but he remains subject to bankruptcy restrictions preventing him operating a business and will do for some years to come. During bankruptcy proceedings lies about a £470,000 property in Runswick Bay which the trustee sells at a reduced price to his girlfriend.

2009 to 2013 - Contacts hundreds of women through the Sugar Daddy dating website, posing as a successful businessman, sometimes using a false name, claims to have millions of pounds and other interests offshore.  Has relationships with four women, three of them sexual relationships, and defrauds all four.  Some are single women bringing up children alone.

The first discovers his real life when she sees publicity about his first court case relating to his business friends’ frauds in 2012.

He tells the second woman he needs money to set up an upmarket escort agency providing girls for businessmen.

July 2012 - Charged with the £1.24 million business friends’ frauds.  On court bail continuously until he is jailed in June 2013. 

Starts the third Sugar Daddy relationship. The woman only learns he has a girlfriend when, wanting her money back, she tracks him down to his home.

October 22, 2012 - Appears before York Crown Court.  Case is adjourned for trial which is later listed for April 22, 2013.

November 30, 2012 - Pleads guilty to six fraud offences before York Crown Court.  From this point he is a convicted fraudster.

By January 2013 - Has started the fourth Sugar Daddy relationship.  He later tells the woman he has bowel cancer.  In the same month, Hampton Rock starts operating and he starts contact with an architect who works with Hampton Rock and becomes another fraud victim.

Early 2013 - Meets a wealthy retired north-east businessman who becomes another victim.

April 22, 2013 - Pleads guilty to five more fraud offence. Persuades Judge Harold Crowson to delay sentence “so he can put his affairs in order”.  Continues the Hampton Rock and other frauds.

May 29, 2013 - Before the sentencing hearing, sends the architect a £26,000 cheque apparently to repay money invested at Brudenell’s suggestion. Cheque bounces. By the time the architect realises what has happened Brudenell is in prison.

June 3, 2013 - Brudenell jailed for five years and four months.  
He portrays himself as a successful businessmen driven to fraud to try and keep his head above water when his businesses failed. 

October 31, 2013 - Judge Crowson confiscates his £23,595 pension pot after hearing it’s all the assets he has and that he benefited by £1,446,480 from his business friends’ frauds.

April 28, 2014 - Brudenell appears from prison before York Crown Court for the first time on the second set of fraud charges.

October 3, 2014 - Pleads guilty to 12 fraud and bankruptcy offences.  Sentence is adjourned and he is returned to prison.

November 6, 2014 - Brudenell jailed for a further 44 months.