Business News

ASIC moves on two SMSF operators

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has cancelled the credit licence of a property spruiking firm and confiscated the passports of the directors operating an SMSF advice firm as a result of two separate investigations covering the sector.

In the first action, the corporate regulator cancelled the Australian credit licence of David Parry Finance because the company had been placed into liquidation on 26 March.

However, an ASIC investigation into the operations of David Parry Finance, and its previous trading names, Heritage Financial Solutions and Heritage – Freedom & Security, will continue, with the corporate watchdog focusing heavily on the advice provided to individuals about the establishment of an SMSF for the purpose of leveraged property investments where David Parry Finance would facilitate the borrowing.

ASIC expressed concerns over the structure of the loans and property ownership in those circumstances.

In the second action, the regulator gained Federal Court orders for the passports of Ostrava Equities directors Vanessa Ash and Bradley Grimm to be surrendered due to alleged unauthorised withdrawal of clients’ funds and the charging of fees uncovered through a separate ASIC investigation.

Ostrava Equities had been offering advice to individuals on SMSF establishment and management as well as financial advice, insurance and legal services.

Court orders to restrain the travel of Grimm and Ash were secured on 17 April along with orders freezing their personal assets and those owned or held by Ostrava Equities, Ostrava Asset Management and Ostrava Securities.

These orders were extended on an interim basis from 21 April, but subsequent to a hearing on 4 May, the asset restraint orders were not continued.

ASIC’s investigation of the matter is continuing.

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