Wellington, July 6, 2020
A foreign exchange broker who defrauded his clients of approximately $1.55 million by using forged documents has been sentenced to three years and four months imprisonment.
Russell Maher (53) was sentenced today (July 6, 2020) in the Auckland District Court on 47 representative charges of ‘Using forged documents’ brought by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO).
The charges relate to Forex Brokers Limited (FBL), through which the defendant provided foreign exchange services.
Mr Maher sought to maintain client confidence in his business by forging documents, which misrepresented the timing of foreign currency transactions he conducted on behalf of his clients. In doing so he concealed the deteriorating financial position of FBL.
SFO Chief Executive Julie Read, said, “Mr Maher’s dishonest, repetitive and premeditated offending resulted in significant financial losses to his clients. He abused his position of trust to create the illusion that his business was successful when it was not. Such deceitful behaviour damages New Zealand’s reputation as a safe place to invest and do business.”
The defendant, Russell Angus Maher (53), operated a foreign exchange broking business from 1995 until 2017. He provided foreign exchange services through Forex Broker Ltd (FBL).
Mr Maher was the sole director and shares of the company were held by him and his wife.
Car yards and other importers used FBL’s services.
The company was placed in liquidation in April 2017 and Mr Maher was declared bankrupt in November 2018.
Source: Serious Fraud Office, Auckland