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Monday, November 17, 2008

Hedge trader dad behaving badly

Simon Sywak and wife on South Coast of New South Wales

When London hedge trader Simon Sywak decided he didn’t want to continue paying child maintenance for his two boys anymore, he told a British court the unlikely story that he was broke, unemployed and was going to train as a bus driver.

Helen and Simon Sywak married in Sydney in 1997

His ex wife Helen smelled a rat at once, she knew him too well, he would never give up his luxurious lifestyle so she hired a private investigator. After a long chase he’s been found now living near Bega on the South Coast of New South Wales with his new wife, former English spin bowler Phil Tufnell’s ex wife Alison Tuffnell who has admitted to working as an escort.

Allison Tuffnell

"From the time I received the application, I was suspicious. An ex-prostitute wouldn't marry someone who was about to lose his job and Simon was far too good a trader to remain jobless." Helen said.

Rumours in financial circles and on specialist banking websites helped trace him to Australia in June, although his exact whereabouts have not been known until now.

Sydney born Mr Sywak is suing Westpac for a $1.3 million sign-on bonus he said he was promised but not paid. He said in a statement of claim filed in the Federal Court late last week that Westpac promised him the sum to compensate for a $2 million bonus he would have been entitled to had he stayed in his previous job with the banking broker JP Morgan in Singapore. He left Singapore after his ex wife Helen’s investigator tracked him down.

It seems Mr Sywak is a clever cookie. In the claim presented to the court it states that in the course of his career, Mr Sywak had developed a “methodology and principles” which allowed him to achieve a high level of success trading financial derivatives worldwide.

Helen Sywak

His claim states that Westpac made misleading representations about the sign-on bonus - that it would be denied only if he undertook illegal trading activity such as fraud. He argues he lost his job because of “personal affairs” which did not affect the “discharge of his professional duties”.

Despite being caught, he continued to refuse to pay maintenance for his two boys and not only brazened it out for several months but continued a court case against his former wife in the hope that delays would bankrupt her.

Why do fathers who can well afford it, deny their children a happy, secure future by withholding funds, they seem to stop caring about them as soon as they leave the marriage.