On 15 March 2019, former financial planner Gabriel Nakhl was sentenced to 10 years’ imprisonment with a non-parole period of six years, after he took approximately $5.1 million of his clients’ investment funds and used it for his own purposes. Reparation orders totalling $4.6 million were made in favour of the victims.
The court found that while Mr Nakhl was a representative of Australian Financial Services Limited (in liquidation) and the sole director of SydFA Pty Ltd (deregistered), he advised clients to set up self-managed superannuation funds and to invest their superannuation and other funds in products such as shares, managed funds and high interest rate bank accounts.
Rather than investing the investors’ funds in these products, however, Mr Nakhl used them as he pleased. For example he paid some of his personal and business expenses and invested in shares and options unauthorised by his clients.
Mr Nakhl then lied to the investors, by providing them with regular reports that falsely stated he had invested their funds in accordance with his advice and that their investments were performing well.
The 12 investors allowed Mr Nakhl to invest approximately $6.7 million on their behalf. He lost approximately $5.1 million of the invested funds, and most of his clients lost all their life savings and superannuation.
In September 2013, Mr Nahkl became a bankrupt and placed SydFA Pty Ltd into liquidation. In November 2013, he was permanently prevented from providing financial services.
Mr Nakhl is not allowed to manage a company until 2028.
Gabriel Nakhl was sentenced to ten years’ imprisonment with a non-parole period of six years in relation to:
- Eight counts of engaging in dishonest conduct while carrying on a financial services business, contrary to s1041G(1) of the Corporations Act.
- Four counts of s1041G(1) were taken into account at sentence pursuant to s16BA of the Crimes Act 1914 (Cth). (When the court is sentencing a person on federal offences, this section allows it to take into account other federal offences the person has not been formally charged with.)