The two chiefs of the failed broking firm Opes Prime have received jail sentences for their role in the collapse of the company.


The two founders, Laurie Emini and Anthony Blumberg, were sentenced to one year and six months respectively after the courts found them criminally liable for the collapse of the firm. The third founder, Julian Smith, will face trial next April.


The sentences represent some of the first jail terms handed down to key figures involved in the sub-prime crises in 2008.


Both men pleaded guilty to charges relating to dishonesty offences under the Corporations Act and both have agreed to give evidence against Mr Smith when he faces trial next year.


“The Crown concedes, correctly, that both pleas facilitate the course of justice and demonstrate remorse,” Justice David Beach said in the sentencing hearing.


Justice Beach said that Blumberg had assisted liquidators recover upwards of $226 million from the broker’s financiers, assisting those that had been worst affected by the company’s collapse.


Emini pleaded guilty to two counts of dishonestly using his position as a director and one count of recklessly failing to discharge his duties as a director. Blumberg pleaded guilty to one count of dishonestly using his position as director in acquiring funding from their ANZ financiers.


Justice Beach said the two’s clear sense of remorse and clarity of admission of guilt relating to specific offences had ensured the men to a lesser sentence.