Australian Court sentences ex-Deutsche Bank trader over recording false transactions

Maria Nikolova

Andrew Donaldson has been sentenced in the District Court in Sydney to 18 months imprisonment, with the sentence fully suspended.

About a year after the Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC) announced that charges had been brought against former Deutsche Bank FX options and futures trader Andrew Donaldson, the sentence in the case against him has been announced.

Mr Donaldson has been sentenced in the District Court in Sydney to 18 months imprisonment after pleading guilty to falsifying entries in Deutsche Bank’s internal financial records and systems. The sentence was fully suspended and Mr Donaldson was released on his own recognisance with a condition to be of good behaviour for 2 years and a security sum of $10,000.

Mr Donaldson pleaded guilty to one charge of using his position dishonestly with the intention of directly or indirectly gaining an advantage for himself.

Between 25 July 2013 to 25 June 2014, while working as a FX, options and futures trader with Deutsche Bank in Sydney, Mr Donaldson made a total of 85 false entries into Deutsche Bank’s internal records. By making these entries, Mr Donaldson was falsely representing to Deutsche Bank that he had made substantial profits of more than AUD31 million from his trading in financial products, including US Treasury Note Futures.

As detailed in the agreed facts on sentence, the direct or indirect advantage that Mr Donaldson sought to gain by recording these false transactions was to falsely increase his recorded profit, and to mask his actual trading losses. He was then potentially able to meet his annual revenue budget, be eligible for larger incentive payments, and promote himself to a prospective employer.

As the entries related to trades that were fictitious and never executed in the market, no external parties were affected.

Let’s recall that, in September 2016, ASIC permanently banned Mr Donaldson from providing financial services, after finding that he had contravened a financial services law, that his conduct was extremely serious and that ASIC had reason to believe that Mr Donaldson was not of good fame and character.

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