UK Court Orders ThinkMarkets to Return $4.28m to Client Account

Court ruling orders forex broker ThinkMarkets to return $4 million to client fund before February trial in contract dispute case.

Key Insights

  • UK court ordered ThinkMarkets to return $4.28 million to client fund by Monday, amid dispute with Turkish trader over debited account.
  • Client alleges wrongful seizure of funds in 2021 after ThinkMarkets claimed contract breaches on special swap-free accounts.
  • Ruling is interim injunction before February trial, but threatens contempt fines if ThinkMarkets disobeys order.

LONDON – A UK court has ordered Australia-based online trading firm ThinkMarkets to return $4.28 million to a client’s segregated account by Monday, amid an ongoing legal dispute with a former Turkish client.

The London Commercial Court issued ThinkMarkets’ UK and Australian entities an interim injunction requiring the broker to transfer the funds by 4:30 pm (1630 GMT) while the case brought by client Abdurrahman Suzgun proceeds.

Suzgun runs a Turkish precious metals trading company and alleges ThinkMarkets wrongfully debited the amount from his trading account in late 2021 over contract breaches before moving it offshore.

ThinkMarkets claimed Suzgun abused special swap-free Islamic accounts for longer-term trades instead of hedging physical deals. It argues it was owed over $1.6 million in swap fees Suzgun avoided.

But Suzgun contends he acted within agreement terms, and objected to ThinkMarkets shifting his account out of UK regulatory jurisdiction against his will after seizing funds.

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While a February trial will determine the merits of both sides’ arguments, Judge Richard Pearce ordered the disputed monies back into a segregated client account for now, on penalty of contempt fines or seizure for non-compliance.

The lawsuit follows ThinkMarkets abandoning a planned $160 million merger in December with a Toronto stock exchange shell company, after reports of multi-million dollar losses and debt prompted auditors to warn on its viability if it continued independently.

The broker, which has suffered an exodus of senior staff recently according to sources, faces further reputational damage from the court’s interim judgement forcing the return of contested client money.

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