This man stole $105 million from you and me

Tony Yoo
·2-min read
Simon Antequil walks on street after a court hearing in 2019.
Simon Antequil was the founder of Plutus Payroll, which pocketed client money that was supposed to be paid as tax. (Image: AAP)

A Sydney man has been jailed for seven years and six months for his role in a group that defrauded more than $105 million from taxpayers.

The founder of company Plutus Payroll, Simon Anquetil, was sentenced in the Supreme Court of NSW for his involvement as "principal conspirator" in a complex scam that saw a syndicate pocket millions from legitimate clients that were supposed to be paid as tax.

The 37-year-old man was sentenced to a non-parole period of five years after pleading guilty to defrauding the Commonwealth and dealing with proceeds of crime.

The stolen funds were due to be paid as GST or pay-as-you-go withholding tax.

The investigation took years of effort by the Australian Federal Police and the Australian Taxation Office.

"Tax crime affects everyone. This particular fraud has ripped off innocent creditors and deprived the public of valuable funds that could otherwise be used to fund essential services," said ATO Serious Financial Crime Taskforce chief Will Day.

Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions deputy director Berdj Tchakerian said this type of fraud is a theft on all Australians who correctly pay their taxes.

"This offender’s behaviour was sophisticated, planned and motivated by greed, resulting in a massive fraud against the revenue, which effectively is a fraud also on all other law-abiding taxpayers who do the right thing and lawfully pay their taxes."

Anquetil is the fifth person to be sentenced from the syndicate:

  • Former Plutus Payroll general manager Joshua Kitson was sentenced to 4.5 years jail last year

  • Devyn hammond was sentenced to four years jail last month

  • Aaron Paul was sent to jail for three years in February

  • Paul O'Leary was sentenced in June to two years and three months of prison

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