The man behind hireboat company Challenger Syndicateships has been convicted on 18 fraud-related charges

Charles Edward Rimmer, known as Ed Rimmer, appeared at Hereford Crown Court on 15 February and pleaded guilty to 18 fraud-related charges.

The charges included three counts of fraud by abuse of position of trust, eight counts of obtaining a money transfer by deception, three counts of false accounting and four counts of theft.

The charges amount to £536,000 of fraud but West Mercia Police claims the true total could be a lot higher.

Mr Rimmer was a director of Challenger Syndicateships Limited, which organised syndicates for motor and sailing boats and he was a partner at Challenger Syndicateships, which managed canalboat syndicateships. Both companies went into administration in January 2008.

Mr Rimmer was arrested in June of last year and was charged

on 14 September 2010.