Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions

Sergio AMARANTI - Financial Services Fraud

Year: 
2018-2019
Category: 
Fraud
Location: 
Western Australia

On 12 April 2019, Mr Sergio Amaranti was sentenced to two years and nine months’ imprisonment, to be released after 18 months upon entering into a Recognisance Release Order, in the District Court of Western Australia after earlier pleading guilty to seven counts of dishonest conduct.

Between 6 January 2009 and 14 October 2015, Mr Amaranti engaged in dishonest conduct by diverting 51 client refunds to personal accounts held in his name, totalling $199,391.32. These 51 refunds were owed to 35 clients from Phoenix Insurance Brokers Pty Ltd (Phoenix) for cancellations and adjustments of their insurance policies.

Mr Amaranti was employed as a Director of Phoenix from 25 January 2002 to 25 February 2016, and was a senior insurance broker with the firm from 2000 to 2015. He was the responsible officer under Phoenix’s Australian financial services licence, issued under the Corporations Act 2001.

In sentencing, Judge Vernon said general deterrence was the paramount consideration. She said this type of offending undermines the trust and confidence that people place in the profession and businesses of a type that Phoenix operates.

In November 2016, the Australian Securities & Investments Commission permanently banned Mr Amaranti from providing financial services. As a result of his conviction, he is automatically disqualified from managing companies for five years.

Charges

Mr Sergio Amaranti was sentenced to two years and nine months’ imprisonment, to be released after 18 months upon entering into a Recognisance Release Order in relation to:

  • Seven counts of engaging in dishonest conduct while carrying on a financial services business, contrary to section 1041G and 1311(1) of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth).

A Reparation order in the amount of $29,951.30 was made in favour of Phoenix Insurance Brokers Pty Ltd pursuant to section 21B(1) of the Crimes Act (Cth) .