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Published:  23 July, 2008

By Jim Budd

Following a complaint from an investor, Devon police have begun an investigation into the disappearance of Drysberg & Nash, a wine-investment operation that operated from 44 St Olav's Court, London SE16, a business centre close to the southern entrance to the Rotherhithe Tunnel. The company was not registered with Companies House. Harpers understands that the company was set up by Stephen Rhodes and James Frost. Both had worked as brokers for Boington & Fredericks Ltd, which was run by two convicted fraudsters and was closed in the public interest by the DTI in November 2001. Apparently, Rhodes had previously worked for James Devereaux Ltd, a whisky-investment scam that went bankrupt in December 1996 with debts of 1.9m. Frost signed the lease for St Olav's Court and the company started operating in late 2001. Drysberg & Nash sold overpriced red Bordeaux. One client bought a case of 1996 Loville Las Cases in August 2002 for 3,200 - available elsewhere for 1,050. The company has now disappeared, and ownership of some of the wine that was stored in the name of Drysberg & Nash is being transferred to its investors.