UK couple convicted in fake bomb detector scam

Doubtful News has kept up on the ongoing accusations, arrests and convictions of those involved in a scam that garnered millions of dollars from security forces around the world in exchange for a cheap, useless “bomb detector” and device that was claimed to find other things including drugs and missing children.

Jim McCormick and Gary Bolton have been sent to jail and lost their appeals. Now, more are convicted.

Dunstable couple guilty of bomb detector fraud.

A couple in their sixties who made fake bomb detectors and sold them around the world have been convicted of fraud.

The couple had denied fraud at the Old Bailey trial, claiming their device, sold as Alpha 6, did work.

It consisted of an aerial on a handle into which a card was slotted. The card was supposedly programmed to detect different substances.

The couple, of Houghton Road, also claimed the device could help police find missing child Madeleine McCann.

The detectors were marketed by the couple’s company Keygrove and some were found to have bits of torn-up paper inside, including a photo of missing Madeleine.

Det Con Joanne Law said: “Sam and Joan Tree are criminals who put lives at risk when they chose to cash in on detectors manufactured to supposedly locate anything from hidden explosives to missing persons.

The devices were really nothing more than plastic boxes with an antenna attached. The manufacturing costs was only a few pounds per device but they sold thousands per unit, sometimes as much as £1,100 (approx. $2000).

The case of Madeleine McCann has to date not been solved.

Following news of the guilty verdicts on Samuel and Joan Tree, the news has emerged that Gary Bolton of GT200 infamy appealed against both his conviction and sentence. Bolton lost challenges against his conviction and seven-year jail sentence yesterday. This news could not be revealed until the Trees verdict.

Bolton was present in the dock of the court to hear Lord Justice Pitchford, Mr Justice Wilkie and Mr Justice Green reject his claims that he suffered “unfair prejudice” during his trial and that his sentence was too long.

Lord Justice Pitchford said the sentence was “appropriate” for the criminality involved in his case.

It’s important to spread the word about these wins against fraud.

Tip: P. Robinson

  12 comments for “UK couple convicted in fake bomb detector scam

  1. Lee
    August 1, 2014 at 3:01 PM

    All I can say is “EXCELLENT!” For as long as this has taken to occur, let us hope all involved are brought to justice. For me that is the only question still unanswered ‘Why did it take SO long?” I am sure that payoff has something to do with it.

  2. One Eyed Jack
    August 1, 2014 at 3:54 PM

    Lord Justice Pitchford said the sentence was “appropriate” for the criminality involved in his case.

    7 years seems rather light to me. How many people died due to reliance on these fake devices? Anything less than a life sentence seems like they’re getting off easy.

  3. xxicenturyboy
    August 1, 2014 at 7:36 PM

    These people don’t even see what they did wrong. Complaining that his sentence was too long. wow.

  4. Bill T.
    August 1, 2014 at 8:13 PM

    Just because they claim to have done nothing wrong doesn’t mean that’s their actual belief. #1 rule of a con is to NEVER admit wrong doing.

  5. One Eyed Jack
    August 1, 2014 at 11:42 PM

    Considering how they chose to make a living, it’s doubtful that they care for anything other than themselves.

  6. Dick Emery-Paper
    August 2, 2014 at 5:35 AM

    I was on the jury that convicted The Trees. For us, the hardest part of their defence to break down was the “I believed the device worked and who is anyone to tell me otherwise.”
    Defence counsel for Mrs. Tree told us, “It is impossible to open up someone’s head, peer inside and find out what they are thinking. This is a perfect case for a jury.” That last part I took to mean, basically, “Good luck.”
    It took sixteen and a half hours of deliberation to reach the majority verdicts required of us.

  7. Peter Robinson
    August 2, 2014 at 6:06 AM

    One aspect of the case against the Trees that is interesting is that Samuel Tree, along with Malcolm Roe (now believed dead) were responsible for importing the Quadro Tracker from the U.S. to the U.K.

    They hooked up with Gary Bolton, and went on to rename it the Mole. When they fell out, Bolton hooked up with James McCormick to sell the Mole, Tree went off and hooked up with Simon Sherrard (regrettably found not guilty) on the Alpha 6 variant.

    Subsequently Bolton and McCormick fell out. Bolton moving on to the Gt200 variant, and McCormick the ADE651.

    So, one could say that Samuel Tree is the root of all the scam U.K. , with all the branches of the fraud stemming from him. One hopes his sentence may reflect this, and he leaves us to spend a good long time in prison. No doubt you will twig my awful punning.

  8. Alan Mullet
    August 2, 2014 at 7:16 AM

    Leaf it out, mate. You’re barking.

  9. Alan Mullet
    August 2, 2014 at 7:25 AM

    I was just drawing attention to the difficulty a jury faces in this type of trial. I’m not at all surprised that Sherrard walked free but, hopefully, he can be re-investigated on another charge.

  10. August 2, 2014 at 9:59 AM

    Something is lost in translation here…


  11. August 5, 2014 at 8:49 AM

    “Leaf it out, mate. You’re barking!”

    Translation from British to American:

    British phrase “leave it out, mate!” = “you’re pulling my leg!”

    “You’re barking ” is shortened from “you’re barking mad, you are!” = “you’re nuts!”

  12. Syd Foster
    August 5, 2014 at 8:54 AM

    Oh, and from Peter Robinson’s post at the root of this pun bush: “you’ll twig my awful punning” simply means to catch on.

    To twig = to catch on; to realise.

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