A WIRRAL businessman convicted of defrauding 128 elderly investors out of a total of more than £5m will be sentenced today.

Following trial at Preston Crown Court in November, Malcolm Barber, from Wallasey, was found guilty of two counts of fraudulent trading and one count of carrying out an unauthorised investment business.

A second defendant Terry Warrington, from Morecambe, pleaded guilty to two counts of fraudulent trading, one count of carrying out an unauthorised investment business and theft at an earlier hearing.

He is also due to be sentenced this morning.

The men were charged with the offences following a four-year investigation into their involvement in two investment and loan companies between December 2002 and August 2010.

Following the eight-week hearing, a jury took less than four hours to return guilty verdicts against Barber, of Links View.

He had denied two counts of participating in a fraudulent business, claiming he did not play a management role at the companies during the time in question.

Detective Constable Stuart Haigh from Titan's regional asset recovery team said: "Terry Warrington and Malcolm Barber are fraudsters who promised the earth to people but delivered very little.

"Their investors were often people enjoying the later stages of life who wanted to make the money that they had earned from a lifetime of work last a little bit longer."