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Links: Another close escape from WGA
So just how do these fraudsters operate? Simple. They have two registered business addresses, one in Bahrain where they first drag in their clients from their website, and the other in Zug, Switzerland, where they purport to arrange the loan documentation and registration. Typically a potential client has sourced WGA from their website or been led there by any number of well-placed press releases announcing WGA funding of some very large loans or equity involvements in well known companies with high public profiles. Many have been introduced by brokers in Australia, some innocently, some part of the sting. The Australian and the Australian Financial Review, both highly respected newspapers, have carried these stories. An example is a press release stating that WGA had early in 2010 rescued the Anglo-Irish building giant, McCabes. So far, according to reliable sources, John McCabe has confirmed that not a single dollar has yet come from his loan agreement with WGA, and he is out by over GBP2.0 Million in fees paid.

To further make this scam even more plausible and appealing to his victim's, WGA even announce in the press that they are to open new offices in the victim's countries. They made such an announcement in the New Straits Times as they circled the Malaysin victim, and even offered him a "franchise". Nothing of course eventuated after they had succesfully obtained USD$4.425 Million from the victim.
They also published similar press releases in Australia, and also in Nepal where we believe another company was then defrauded.

But a new client does not know this, he only knows what's been published, and so sends in an executive summary supporting his company's loan requirement. He is then invited to Bahrain for an interview with Ali Syed and Omer Khan, after which he is offered an advisory agreement with Western Gulf Advisory AG, the Swiss registered company, along with a verbal assurances that the loan sought will be authorised after due diligence has taken place. Then starts the process of WGA obtaining the due diligence fees (currently GBP54,000) and then 0.81% for registration fees plus 0.72% for indemnity fees, all to be paid in US Dollars, and all to be paid up-front into WGA's nominated account. No joint account, no safe Escrow - just pay the money straight to WGA who then have sole control over it. Bye bye dollars, nice to have known you.

Post GFC, and after reading glowing press about WGA, clients around the world have beaten the path to their doors, cap in hand and cheque books ready. Wikifrauds' investigations just in Australia alone reveal that WGA have so far collected well in excess of $50M and perhaps upwards of $100M from unsuspecting companies who are still waiting after as long as 12 months for their loans to materialise, while WGA finesse the clients with new meetings in Zug, new paperwork and new promises. They are experts at keeping clients on the hook with the threat of breaking non-disclosure agreements hanging over their heads. They even use a very prominent Sydney-based lawyer John Mulally to comfort current and potential clients to keep them happy. Yet they continually lie, and make and break promises every week.
Mulally has been twice dismissed from other law firms in Australia on the grounds of misconduct. One instance involved him creating false invoices. This is a matter of record and confirmed by the law firms themselves. He is on WGA's payroll right now.

Wikifrauds has been given a copy of a covert video recording of this lawyer actually stating that "WGA are real, have settled deals, and can perform."

There always has to be a start point with some compliant local identities who will provide some sort of green light to a new client. They are part of the conspiracy and no doubt share in the spoils. We suspect they are the proprietors of the alleged 'first deal settled'. On contacting these people, new clients are reassured with confirmations that all dealings with WGA have been more than satisfactory, and the client is then usually referred to WGA's Sydney lawyer. His story is then, that having acted for these clients in the first instance, he was subsequently asked to join WGA to handle their future loans to Australian companies. In this capacity, the 'pet lawyer' then is more than happy to informally meet with new clients and to assure them that WGA is "real, does have the money, will and can perform", and he also confirms that the initial deal has been settled. This first deal was publicised in "The Australian" back in January 2010, courtesy of a well-known PR company in Sydney, and was a loan of $220M to Landmark Business Developments International, and Regional Land and its sister company, Gawler Project Pty Ltd. This deal was never settled, and the lawyer in fact was a director of Landmark until it was derigistered in April 2010. He remains a co-director in six other companies along with the original director of Landmark. This deal is a sham and is still used today as the "bait" to new clients. See below for further details on this company.

The following email was received fom a new informant in Holland on Sunday Feb 27. The name has been withheld on request, but IT IS GENUINE and is exactly how Omer behaves in conversation:
"I own a investment firm in the Netherlands and I'm a entrepreneurial finance professional. A few weeks ago WGA contacted me personally and they asked me if I was interested in a lucrative partnership with them. I never heard of the company, when I saw their website I was quite impressed on how big they were. It seemed to me like a chance I didn’t want to miss. I have a client in the USA which required little over 100MM$ for his venture. I discussed this project with WGA and they were immediately interested, this was very rare to me so I started scratching the back of my head wondering what was going on. And then I knew, he sent me the terms and conditions for the loan (I have included attachments for your reference), I was quite shocked by the upfront fees involved. So I called their CFO and asked him whether it was possible to place to upfront fees on a safe escrow account. When he told me this was impossible I knew it was a scam and begun my own research. I found Matt Nippert of the NBR very fast and he connected me with other journalists. For this reason we've quit our negotiations with WGA. They are actively approaching companies like me and other entrepreneurs to promote their loans. It was also very suspicious that they were immediately interested in our project. When we were having a conference call with Omar Khan (CFO), Anoop Koshy (Financial Analyst) and Mr. X (my client), my client was explaining the project specifications, activities and location and Omar Khan was like: yea yea yea its all good. As a venture capital and private equity professional I know that there was something wrong as most investors ask A LOT of questions and about specific details. WGA obviously didn’t care about this, they only wanted 3,5 million upfront so they could 'process the loan' ".

A further connection in Australia and New Zealand is a 'broker', one Robyn Schneller.

Robyn Sandra Schneller's son, (name withheld), registered the business name "Western Gulf Advisory" in January 2010.* (See detailed explanation below). The trading name was registered by W and R Capital Investments Pty Ltd, currently owned by her son. The NSW Office of Fair Trading records show that the trading or business activity was listed as "FINANCE FACILITATION AND COMMISSIONED AGENT". It was de-registered in September 2010 when things started to 'hot-up' with Australian clients beginning to complain to Robyn Schneller about lack of performance, and wanting their fees returned.

However, Robyn Schneller resigned from W and R Capital Investments Pty Ltd on April 28, 2009 and her son remained as sole director. So it was under his stewardship as sole director that the trading name "Western Gulf Advisory" was registered in January the following year, 2010. Yet all through this period and well into late 2010, it was Robyn Schneller who was introducing clients to WGA and Ali Syed, and clients were told that Robyn Schneller was an employee of WGA. And when things started to go downhill, it was the same Robyn Schneller who then refused to take calls from aggrieved clients who were either demanding settlements or demanding their fees back.  

W and R Capital Investments Pty Ltd itself was registered on September Sep 30, 2009 with a paid up capital of one dollar, just around the time that WGA started gathering Australian clients through Robyn Schneller. However, ASIC records also show that as of today (April 15, 2011), W and R Capital Investments Pty Ltd have not lodged Annual Returns or Financial Reports as required by law.

Many questions arise from all these facts:
    Why was Robyn Schneller acting on behalf of WGA, and does she hold a financial services or similar licence to do so?
    On whose authority was Robyn Schneller acting when attending the NZ Herald's Infinz Awards in New Zealand in late April, 2010?
    On whose authority was she acting when meeting with several insolvency practioners in New Zealand in May, 2010?
    On whose authority was she acting when briefing the NZ Herald about WGA having "earmarked US$3 Billion for investment in Australasia"?
                                                                              see NZ Hreald report in full.
    On Schneller's recommendation, Crafar Farms, in receivership at the time, paid an establishment fee to WGA and were then quickly told the loan was not
    approved. Why has Schneller not assisted Crafar Farms to get their money returned?
    How did Robyn Schneller obtain the many WGA clients from both NewZealand and Australia?
    Why won't Robyn Schneller take calls from her clients? Indeed, on one occasion that a client known to Wikifrauds did get through to her, she became
    "quite abusive".

UPDATE MAY 8, 2012: We have now received evidence from NSW Fair Trading, and a statutory declaration from Robyn Schneller's son's lawyer, stating the son's position. "The son" has discovered that the lodging of documents registering both W and R Capital Investments Pty Ltd and the trading name "Western Gulf Advisory" contained false signatures puporting to be his own signature. On the evidence provided to Wikifrauds, we are completely satisfied that Mrs Schneller's son has had no role to play in the WGA fraud.

This new information answers some of the questions above, and further points to the deceiptful nature of Robyn Schneller herself. How could someone stoop so low as to deceive her own son in order to create a company which has now been shown to have acted as a scout for WGA, and a supplier of further clients for Ali Syed to rip-off! And she was being paid for it. Omer Khan of WGA personally told a number of people that Robyn Schneller was a paid employee of WGA.

We have also been advised that and Robyn Schneller and her son are no longer in communication.

If Mrs Robyn Schneller wishes to take any action for defamation against us, she may contact us and we will provide details of our attorney to accept service. Alternatively, she may wish to clear her name and provide us with information which may be helpful to the victims of WGA in their pursuit of recovering their losses.

There are a number of people who would like to contact Robyn Schneller, mostly clients wanting her assistance in getting their money refunded.
Interested persons may contact us and we will provide you with an address where we believe she now resides.

                                                                               Robyn Schneller - Western Gulf Advisory

                                                                                       Contact us for information.

The Landmark Sham.

Directors of  Landmark: Alan Keller, John Mulally
Directors of Regional Land:
Alan Keller, Matt Somers. (Somers' new Lexus motor vehicle was repossessed in mid February this year - not bad going for a guy who got a $220 Million loan from WGA. What did he do with the money? )

Mulally and Keller were also involved in a murky loan deal out of China, with alleged billions lost to a Chinese fraudster posing as high-ranking military official. Quite a tale of intrigue, and we wonder who really was the victim, and who the perpetrators. See press report.
How the scam is maintained.
Fear is the key. Fear of loss, and fear of humiliation.

Once a client has parted with any money, that money is gone forever. The first money parted with is the committment fee, which now stands at some GBP 54,000. This is the fee paid when a client signs the "Advisory Agreement". The next fees are the loan processing and registration fee, and the indemnity insurance and currency hedge fee. Together this amounts to 1.53% of the loan amount. The advisory agreement contains a specific clause (clause 6.7) that quite clearly states that these so-called refundable fees will in fact be refunded promptly should a loan not be proceeded with for any reason. This agreement also contains a confidientiality clause. This is where the client is bluffed and loses his money. If a refund is requested by a client who has decided not to proceed, or for whom Ali has decided not to perform his loan offer, then the money is really gone at this point. Alo keeps promising he will repay on this date or that date, but never repays. And while he keeps stringing the clients on week afer week and month after month, they are concious that if they disclose the matter to anyone, there will be no chance of getting the refund. So they are stuck between Ali's promises and breaking the advisory agreement if they speak up.

Ali has clients in Autralia who have confided in Wikifrauds and told their stories. We have even seen signed documents and emails confirming refund arrangements, but no refunds have occurred whatsoever, and they are not ever likely to occurr. Quite simply, Ali just keeps the money and lies continuously about it being refunded.

In one case, having waited well beyond a promised refund date, a client was even advised in writing by a letter from WGA's Sydney lawyer, John Mulally, that his fees would be refunded as soon as the Bahrain banks were re-opened for business following civil unrest in that country. The letter was issued in early March 2011, and still no refund. The refund is now months overdue. Wikifrauds knows of several other clients in the same situation - just broken promises and no sign of their money, and many are still bluffed or frightened by the prospect of making the facts public.

Another escape from WGA
Wikifrauds recently received and replied to this correspondence:
"FYI - this is an actual exchange between myself and this fraudster. This should be read from bottom up so you can exercise caution in future -  this sort of thing will only get smarter so get ready for the onslaught in our region. Only last month, I saw their add in FT!"

The following are email exchanges with Omer Khan and this potential client:
From: Omer Khan [mailto:omer@westerngulfadvisory.com] 
Sent: Sunday, January 10, 2010 8:52 AM
To: ayar@irl.com.pk
Cc: ahmedyarm@yahoo.com
Subject: Project Finance - senior debt

Dear Sir,
I would like to introduce Western Gulf Advisory as a business advisor that takes a genuine and personal interest in the well-being and financial success of your business.
Today, scarcity of financial resources is the root cause of many businesses cracking under economic pressure. Irresponsible banks, financial institutions and private placement companies have allowed businesses to borrow beyond their capacity, inevitably leading to collapse. Alan Greenspan's statement: "Any informed borrower is simply less vulnerable to fraud and abuse," is quite pertinent in this respect.
In all realms of life it takes courage to stretch limits and fulfill your potential. .. it's no different in the financial realm. As a trustworthy financial and legal advisor, Western Gulf Advisory (WGA) believes that understanding market behavior and legal systems is a keystone of wealth, leading to financial affluence and business growth.
We have a 10-year old track record of enhancing the credit history of businesses such as yours. Our solutions are real and our expectations, realistic. This is one of the reasons why WGA has continued to grow and expand in spite of the global economic crisis in regions such as the Middle East, Europe and Far East having offices in Switzerland , Bahrain and Hong Kong .
WGA has an extensive network of investors and sovereign clients who would be willing to leverage their financial power to strengthen your business aspirations. Our past record is testimonial of our success in drawing significant finances for those who have sought our expertise. We are not commission agents nor do we believe in taking undue advantage of your necessity. We simply harness the power to transform your financial inabilities into abilities and convert your weakness into strength.

With WGA, you can be assured of completely transparent dealings with integrity - no hidden costs, no bureaucracy, and no wastage of precious time. We welcome you to a dialogue where we can understand how our joint potential can unite to create a highly rewarding relationship.
WGA's range of services is diverse and personalized: ranging from Business Networking, investment planning and tax advisory to immigration and jurisprudence. Also, should you require any information on us in order to carry out your due diligence, please feel free to visit our website:www.westerngulfadvisory.com,  which contains all of our details and also in the attachment, you can find the annual report of our company . However, for more personal discussion, please do not hesitate to contact me on the address given here.

Yours Truly,
Omer Khan
Chief Financial Officer
 Gulf Advisory
Office: +97317585395 Mobile
: +97336200055 Fax: +97317587584 E-mail: omer@westerngulfadvisory.com


From: Ahmed Yar <

Subject: RE: Project Finance - senior debt
To: "'Omer Khan'" <omer@westerngulfadvisory.com>
Cc: ahmedyarm@yahoo.com
Date: Monday, 11 January, 2010, 08:40

Dear Omar,


I hope you are well. May I thank you for the rendered information. Further to our conversation, please note that the project is in the advanced stages of development with key milestones reached.


I am unable to render a full blown project summary until we have signed an NDA – this is necessary since we will be exchanging confidential/proprietary information. Upon confirmation I can send you our standard NDA.


I hope the website provides with reasonable information for you to asses your appetite for this transaction.


I look forward to hearing from you soon.




From: Omer Khan [mailto:omer@westerngulfadvisory.com] 
Sent: Monday, January 11, 2010 10:54 AM
To: ayar@irl.com.pk
Subject: Steps

Dear Sir,
In the attachment you can find the annual report of our company. For your information, we have closed this year with about USD 1.19 Billion in assets. Our new annual report will be on our website in a week or so. Also, we are not commission agents these are our own funds which we invest.
Main terms of the loan are:
1.       Minimum amount to borrow USD 100 Million
2.       Interest rate: 6% to 7% (fixed)
3.       Period 3 to 10 years
4.       Interest is payable every six month. Principle is due in one bullet payment at the end of the term.
Note: If you would like to take hedging, Western Gulf Advisory can arrange it for you. The hedging is going to cost you less than 1% (one time) for the entire term of the loan.


Please find below the steps that we normally take, right from the conduct of the first business meeting until the dispatch of the loan.

  1. First and foremost, I require your business proposal. Once our senior management has shown interest in the proposal, we can schedule a meeting at our head office in Bahrain with the main promoters of your company  with the chairman of our company, where we will begin our due diligence.
  2. On completion of our due diligence, we will send you a Letter of Acceptance confirming our acceptance of you as our client.
  3. After signing the Advisory Agreement, the client is required to deposit GBP 12,000 towards advisory fees.
  4. Once this has been done, we start structuring our scope of work.
  5. On conclusion of these internal procedures, we approach the investment board of our advisory with regards to your credit line.
  6. Once the investment board has approved the credit line, we issue a Sanction Letter with all the details of the amount sanctioned as well as the date of dispatch.
  7. On receiving the sanction letter, the client is required to transfer 0.585% of the loan amount, towards registration and legal charges set by the legal authorities of Switzerland and the Kingdom of Bahrain, a minimum of 15 days prior to the date of remittance of the loan, after which, the registration would be executed and the loan would be dispatched. In the event that the registration does not finalize, due to any reason from either side, we will refund this entire amount, i.e., 0.585% of the loan amount, without any deductions.
  8. The loan will be registered both in the Kingdom of Bahrain and in Switzerland .

Should you have any enquiries, or require any further information, please let me know
Thanking you.
With Regards,

Omer Khan, Chief Financial Officer

From: Omer Khan [mailto:omer@westerngulfadvisory.com] 
 Wednesday, January 20, 2010 4:39 PM
 'Ahmed Yar'
 WGA Annual Report 2009
Dear Sir,
It has been a great year for Western Gulf Advisory, a year of building new relationships and of growth. It gives me great pleasure to inform you that we have closed our accounts for the year 2009 with USD 1.2 billion in assets. 
Our Annual Report, for the financial year ended December 31, 2009, is available on our website, 
www.westerngulfadvisory.com, for your review.
Thanking you.
With Regards,
Omer Khan 
Chief Financial Officer 
Western Gulf Advisory

From: Ahmed Yar [mailto:ayar@irl.com.pk] 
 Friday, February 05, 2010 4:41 PM
 'Omer Khan'< span="">>
 ' ahmedyarm@yahoo.com '
 RE: WGA Annual Report 2009<>
I hope you are well. Unreserved apologies for a delayed response as I was travelling and had limited access to emails. May I thank you for your annual report 2009. Upon reading the information rendered to date, I wish to clarify the following: 
1.        There is a credibility/trust issue whereby we could not ascertain if you have had an actual closure on any assets (revenues earned to date could just come from the 0.58%). Our due-diligence to date could not identify any projects that have been financed by WGA (the Australian news cutting was useful however this was an intention on your part with no details of actual financial closure). We could not ascertain the actual capital structure of your organization and source of funds (the inter-party unsecured loan on your books - till 2018/18 for $53m and $186m respectively came from Mr. Ahsan (Note 6 on your annual report) – is this the mode whereby Mr. Ahsan borrows it from investors and lends to your entity? As stated by yourself,  the funds are proprietary (from your own balance sheet), but your identified steps and your balance sheet lead us to believe it otherwise. 

2.        The rigid structure your proposal was perplexing  to the board members and an emphasis on strict adherence was questioned whereby: 
a.        Never in my banking history nor any of the other board members  have come across a lending structure whereby the borrower is expected to remit a percentage of loan (0.58%) in favor of the lender prior to the disbursement on the basis of regulatory compliance. 
b.        The registration of Loan with Swiss/Bahrain authorities (with an amount 0.585%) is not a mandatory requirement (in pure Loan terms, with other structures this could be a possibility) – We referred this to our legal counsel (an expert on Swiss Regulatory Affairs and Swiss Canton Authorities) and there was no obligation on beneficiary to remit this percentage prior to disbursement. 
An insistence on meeting our Chairman or the lead shareholder face to face in Bahrain – typically the best person in charge of dealing with such matters is either the Executive Director or the Financial Director with whom we have entrusted in raising the required funds. Once the term sheet is agreed upon, our investment committee typically delivers on its views. I realize the cultural angle, especially the Bahrainian Chairman but our board felt this was contrary to our internal policy. 
Omar – in spirit of openness, we have come across numerous entities that have proposed and had a common theme as yours – none have delivered to date. Against this background, we are somewhat cautious and despite the BDO signed balance sheet we are somewhat perplexed of your proposition. I hope this will not prejudice our future relationship and will only serve to enhance relationship once we are comfortable with your pitch. Should you wish to clarify anything, then please do not hesitate to contact me. 

Our correspondence with Ahmed:

Thank you Ahmed. A very interesting but very familiar read. Your story is a mirror of the sagas of at least twenty Australian groups and three from New Zealand. The latest publicly known victim here may be read from this link published by The Australian today: 


There will be more named in the press in the coming few weeks.

May I reproduce any of your correspondence on our website? The more proof and evidence we publish, the greater our chance of bringing Ali and Omer to justice. This is a total ongoing fraud and it must be stopped.

Owner and Editor, Wikifrauds.
Dear Phillip,

Thank you for sharing the Aussie and Kiwi stories. It saddens me that WGA operation is still continuing - they met two close businessman friends recently and suggested the same (this was  as recent as March). By buying that Spanish team they are trying to use the media clips as a way of legitimising their actions. 

With regard to my case, I was contacted by Omar daily and the more he pushed me the more I smelled a rat. Despite the language used in our communication was completely out of norm for someone who was supposedly a CFO. I was glad they came to target me since I have been through several similar cases with clients when I was an Investment Banker in London. I am happy for you to publish my case on your site and if there is anything I could assist with then please do not hesitate to ask.