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Monday, 4 November, 2002, 11:29 GMT
'Goldfinger' loses appeal
John Palmer, 52
Palmer said he was being "persecuted not prosecuted"
Timeshare fraudster John "Goldfinger" Palmer has failed in an appeal against his eight-year jail sentence.

The Court of Appeal in London dismissed the action by the 52-year-old who was convicted in May 2001 of plotting to defraud after a retrial at the Old Bailey.

Palmer, of Battlefields, Bath, had claimed the Crown's recent decision to try to reinstate a 33 million compensation order against him was "tainted with the colour of persecution rather than mere prosecution".

Throughout his trial, Palmer, who defended himself, claimed he was a legitimate businessman and had not been involved in any fraud.


Those who enter into complex international conspiracies should not expect sympathy

Judge Findlay Baker

In court Palmer had claimed restrictions on his liberty and the strain of a lengthy trial should have been taken into account when sentencing took place.

But Judge Findlay Baker, sitting with Lord Justice Longmore and Mr Justice Poole, pointed out that Palmer had been on bail and free to go home at weekends.

The fact that he had made his burdens worse by choosing to represent himself had to be disregarded, he said.

"Those who enter into complex, widespread, long-lasting international conspiracies should not expect sympathy when the process of being called to account turns out to be burdensome," the judge said.

Brinks Mat

There was "no merit" in Palmer's grounds of appeal.

Palmer had always claimed that police were determined to charge him after he was acquitted of handling bullion stolen in the 26 million Brinks Mat raid at Heathrow Airport in 1983.

Brought up in the back streets of Solihull, John Palmer rose to be ranked 105th slot on the Sunday Times Rich List.

In his earlier days he was reputed to keep a sign on his desk that read: "Remember the golden rule - he who has the gold makes the rules."

See also:

03 Nov 02 | England
23 Apr 02 | UK
23 Apr 02 | England
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