Investigation uncovers fraudulent property deals

Investigation uncovers fraudulent property deals

Law
04 September 2015 by Staff Reporter 0 comments

The regulator has thrown the book at a bankrupt financial adviser who collected commissions for selling real estate on behalf of a developer.

ASIC announced that it has permanently banned Nicholas Hunter from the financial services industry after he advised some clients to directly invest their SMSF in property during 2012.

“Mr Hunter was selling the properties on behalf of a Queensland property development company, MOGS Pty Ltd [in liquidation], and collecting commission of between $10,000 and $25,000 per sale,” according to ASIC.

ASIC said Mr Hunter contravened financial services laws and is bankrupt.

The regulator’s investigation found that Mr Hunter was “involved in the issue of falsified Westpac finance letters to MOGS to facilitate payment of his commissions”.

He also provided financial advice to several SMSF clients in 2012 “when not licensed or authorised”.

ASIC commissioner Greg Tanzer said the regulator has recently focused its attention on the SMSF sector as the fastest-growing sector in the superannuation industry.

“The matter involving Mr Hunter highlights ASIC's concerns about the potential for direct property advice though SMSF to constitute financial advice,” he said.

“Further, the adviser must act in the best interests of the client in giving that advice.”

ASIC said that Mr Hunter’s most recent appointment was with Spring Financial Group, between 2011 and 2012, although Spring Financial has denied that he was ever an employee.

[Related: ASIC drafts new real estate rules]

promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
Listen to other installment of the Real Estate Business Podcast
reb top 100 agents 2016

With a combined sales volume of $13 billion in 2016, the Top 100 Agents ranking represents the very best sales agents in Australia. Find out what sets them apart and learn their secrets to success.

featured podcast

featured podcast
William Phillips on how agents can expand their database and grow their business

Get up close and personal with the best real estate sales agents in Australia in Secrets of the Top 100 Agents. ...

View all podcasts

Are dodgy agents being punished enough?

Yes (8.6%)
No (55%)
Only in some states (2.3%)
Not all dodgy agents are being found out (34.1%)

Total votes: 220
The voting for this poll has ended on: April 15, 2017
upcoming events
REB Awards
Sydney The Event Centre 12 Sep
REB Awards
Sydney The Event Centre 12 Sep
Melbourne The Event Centre 14 Oct
Brisbane The Event Centre 18 Dec
View all events
Do you have an industry update?