DanFX Trade former director Daniel Ali jailed for fraud

ASIC

Daniel Farook Ali, former director of DanFX Trade Pty Ltd, has been sentenced in the Brisbane District Court to seven years and three months imprisonment for fraud, following an ASIC investigation.

On 23 May 2024, Mr Ali pleaded guilty to five counts of fraud totalling $771,303 relating to his misappropriation of funds invested for trading and investment purposes.

Mr Ali was the director of DanFX Trade Pty Ltd, which operated an unlicensed foreign exchange trading business. Between May 2016 and November 2017, Mr Ali dishonestly used funds provided by investors to purchase a BMW motor vehicle for a personal associate and real estate for himself and his wife, pay personal expenses, and to pay returns to other investors.

The Court sentenced Mr Ali to seven years and three months imprisonment, with eligibility for parole from 5 July 2024. The Court took into account the time Mr Ali has already spent in custody since November 2021 when imposing the sentence.

In sentencing Mr Ali, Judge Heaton KC said that Mr Ali’s offending involved a level of sophistication, over a period of time, exploiting the trust of his victims, and that his dishonesty contributed to particularly devastating financial positions for those victims.

Mr Ali departed Australia on 8 May 2018, during ongoing civil proceedings commenced against him by ASIC and an ongoing ASIC investigation into his conduct. Following an application by ASIC in 2019, a Queensland magistrate issued a warrant for Mr Ali’s arrest, and in November 2021 he was arrested in Poland. In August 2022, Mr Ali was extradited to Australia to face the charges, and has been remanded in custody since then (22-226MR).

The matter was prosecuted by the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions following a referral from ASIC.

Background

In October 2013, Mr Ali was sentenced to two and half years’ imprisonment, suspended after serving six months in prison, in respect of fraud charges brought by the Queensland Director of Public Prosecutions. This conviction was unrelated to ASIC’s enforcement action.

In November 2017, ASIC permanently banned Mr Ali from providing financial services or engaging in credit activities as a result of his fraud conviction.

Later in November 2017, ASIC obtained orders in the Supreme Court of Queensland appointing Anthony Castley of William Buck as receiver over the assets of Mr Ali, DanFX Trade and related companies (17-396MR).

In May 2018, ASIC successfully applied for the winding up of the scheme operated by Mr Ali and his related companies. Mr Castley was appointed by the Court as the receiver of the scheme and the liquidator of the companies (18-141MR).

In July 2018, ASIC obtained orders in the Supreme Court of Queensland permanently restraining Mr Ali from managing companies, after the Court found that he managed an unregistered managed investment scheme without an Australian financial services licence, and managed DanFX Trade and two related companies despite being disqualified due to his prior fraud conviction (18-220MR).

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