The former director of Queensland-based internet service provider (ISP) Freenet has been convicted and jailed for six years after pleading guilty to two counts of alleged fraud, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has revealed.
Jonathan Parker was convicted for six years’ imprisonment on the first count and three years’ imprisonment on the second count as he appeared before the Beenleigh District Court on 18 December 2019 and 22 January 2022.
He will serve both counts concurrently and will be on a non-parole period of 16 months’ imprisonment.
Parker’s convictions follow an ASIC investigation allegedly revealing that Parker created false invoices to conceal $809,208.30 from Freenet between 30 September 2011 and 18 April 2012.
The investigation also allegedly found Parker dishonestly used $140,000 belonging to a Freenet investor on or around 23 March 2012.
During both alleged instances, Parker was the director of Freenet, which was founded in 2010 and claimed to have been rolling out wireless networks in central business districts (CBDs) across Australia.
John Price, ASIC commissioner, labelled the outcome as significant and serves as a warning to corporate Australia.
“The community will not tolerate directors acting dishonestly to the detriment of their investors or consumers,” Price said.
“There is a high risk your crime will be detected and investigated, and that you will be convicted and go to jail.”
The matter is being prosecuted by the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions.