TV & Movies

There’s A Reason You Can’t Find Jobfished's Ali Ayad Online

Since the documentary aired, he’s removed a lot of his online presence.

by Sophie McEvoy
Ali Ayad from Jobfished

Led by investigative journalist Catrin Nye, BBC Three’s Jobfished explores Madbird — a design agency that scammed dozens of vulnerable workers during the most vulnerable months of 2020. Duped by Ali Ayad, who claimed to be a successful entrepreneur, employees were conned out of thousands of money during a time when those who had been furloughed or made redundant were desperate for work.

Getting to the bottom of what really happened, Jobfished sees Nye and her team not only uncover the web of lies that Ayad spun for his employees, but how they were the ones to truly reveal what was going on within Madbird.

But where is Ayad now, and how have his former employees fought against the scammer?

As expected, Ayad has pretty much disappeared from the internet. While Catrin Nye does manage to track down the scammer in the documentary, Ayad’s interest presence is all but non-existent since filming wrapped for Jobfished. Much like The Tinder Swindler’s Simon Leviev, Ayad has made his Instagram private and removed his LinkedIn profile, as well as the company site for Madbird.

In terms of those featured in the documentary, it looks like they’re rebuilding their lives following Ayad’s scam. Senior-level graphic designer Gemma Brett, who figured out the office wasn’t real, is still working as a graphic designer per networking site The Dots.

Antonia Stuart, the creative and marketing director who dug into the false projects that Madbird claimed to be their own, is now working at the marketing agency Future Self Co and is still based in the United Arab Emirates.

Sales manager Chris Doocey, who was left £10,000 in debt following his involvement with Madbird, is now working as a territory account manager at security software and hardware company Sophos according to his LinkedIn.

Here’s hoping the other “employees” have been able to rebuild their lives, too.