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BFCSA investigates fraud involving lenders, spruikers and financial planners worldwide.  Full Doc, Low Doc, No Doc loans, Lines of Credit and Buffer loans appear to be normal profit making financial products, however, these loans are set to implode within seven years.  For the past two decades, Ms Brailey, President of BFCSA (Inc), has been a tireless campaigner, championing the cause of older and low income people around the Globe who have fallen victim to banking and finance scams.  She has found that people of all ages are being targeted by Bankers offering faulty lending products. BFCSA warn that anyone who has signed up for one of these financial products, is in grave danger of losing their home.

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BFCSA Letter to Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg MP 3rd July 2019 ASIC CRIMINAL NEGILGENCE

Posted by on in ROYAL COMMISSION INTO ASIC NEGLIGENCE
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3rd July 2019

 

The Federal Treasurer Hon. Josh Frydenberg MP

 

P O Box 6022 House of Representatives: Parliament House Canberra ACT 2600

 

 

 

Dear Mr Frydenberg,

 

Criminal Neglect by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission

 

Substandard Consumer Protection.

 

Demand for $36 million in Compensation by Australian Consumers.

 

 

THE COLLAPSE OF THE STERLING GROUP a further 300 victims suffering loss.

 

 

Over the past 20 years, retirees with cash assets, and pensioners with homes as their only asset, have been the target of an unfettered gang of white-collar criminals in Australia. These cast of characters and their offspring are well known to ASIC and first surfaced more than 25 years ago.

Devious entrepreneurs use a specific way of starting a company using a Ponzi structure, creating “information memorandums” instead of prospectuses. The so called “financial products” are exposed when investors attempt to ask for their invested funds be returned; innocent people are then sent into a never-ending cycle of roll-overs until collapse.

Those who scream loudest in the initial stages are paid out by new victims. ASIC seems incapable or too lazy to bother to investigate thoroughly and issue stop orders, when breaches of Corporations Law are so easily identified.

 

I have briefed ASIC Commissioners and Directors on these matters since 1998. I attended many top-level meetings until 2013, when I realised ASIC had been corrupted many years before. I am convinced there is “greasing of palms,” including a tip off in 2004 of a conversation “100 grand for up the top.” Breaches of corporation law are evident in all cases. ASIC’s over-use of Enforceable Undertakings has been criticised publicly for over 20 years. EU’s are used by the rogues as a get out of jail free card.

 

Thousands of letters have been written over the years complaining of a guesstimated $200 billion being stolen by professional white-collar criminals. The target market of course, is invariably older people with assets: many of whom are elderly and each one left in a mountain of stress through loss of life savings or debt via appalling bank loans.

 

How this grand theft assists the National Economy is anyone’s guess.

 

 

 

Recently in WA and Victoria, a small Ponzi by comparison involving the same “cast of characters” has emerged with what we believed to be a $ 36 million loss. A company using (with ASIC’s permission) the word “trust” in the registered company name but no trust account was used. Instead the bank accounts were used as a personal piggy bank: the usual model. The money evaporated.

 

The point of this letter Mr Treasurer, our members are aware of your monthly meetings with ASIC hierarchy, as a long-established protocol and we wish to ask if the names Sterling or Heritage was ever discussed in those briefings and notes?

 

Treasury have had to listen to the same excuses for 20 years and take minutes of each meeting. It is time for Treasury to appoint a competent consumer protector. It is fair to say every current victim of Sterling is “not happy Josh.”

 

We are publicly demanding that due to ASIC’s wealth of data and historical records of evidence collected and, due to ASIC’s obvious and repeated criminal negligence, ASIC immediately pay the victims of STERLING GROUP, whether investors, rolled over shareholders, tenants or landlords be refunded $36 million within the next 7 weeks.

 

Consumer demands seems fair to me under the circumstances and evidence of 21 years of neglect. I refer to the National importance of consumers expectations and receipt of proper Consumer Protection and standards.

 

I am writing to Treasury for two reasons:

 

1. The obvious criminal neglect of ASIC in relation to an appalling record of lack of consumer protection. We have heard all the excuses and received 000’s of letters telling people “not in the public interest to investigate.” People are fed up with ASIC’s non activity and as I have advised Federal Parliament in over 20 reports in the past: the useless “bugger off” letters, victims of financial abuse receive are indeed a shocking response to serious complaints relating to white collar crime.

 

2. Under Freedom of Information I will be asking for the minutes of all monthly meetings between the Treasurer and/or Treasury Officials and ASIC, extending back 20 years.

 

The Federal Government is ignoring the Public Right to Know the names of the “cast of characters” that have been frequently mentioned over and again by me, going back to the days of Westpoint and associated companies and retirees who lost over $680 million in Dec 2005. I first warned ASIC that retiree funds were being stolen by slick operators. At least two of those players have caused several other collapses all the way from 1999 – 2019. Their colleagues are now involved in the recent collapse of the Sterling Group.

 

 

 

By comparison, “only” $30 million in losses have been established to date but that figure may rise over the coming weeks.

 

Another 200 victims of the Sterling Group and its predecessor range of companies have been recently located in Melbourne. These are the “rollover victims:” monies handed over in 2010 and people who have been trying to recover their 12-month investment since 2011. This is typical identification of a Ponzi structure. Further people were added to those same loss registers in 2017. ASIC did ban one seller but allowed the companies to continue with no warnings to the public.

 

ASIC recently lied to the public by telling the media they were unaware of this looming collapsible corporate structure, that they first heard of Sterling Group in 2018.

 

That is false as we have evidence to show 2015 and likely earlier in 2010. State authorities warned ASIC 4 years ago and most of the current crop of victims could have been saved this agony of financial ruin and stress. ASIC did conduct a hopelessly conceived door knock on victims of Sterling to sit down for tea and scones and ask if everything was OK. The elderly asked: “should we be worried?” ASIC said NO.

 

This is typical tick-a-box handling of dire situations, the same mishandling as Westpoint in 2001. ASIC has a data base of information on all these Ponzi fund-raising structures. In 2005, after much prodding, the Chairman admitted $5 billion had been lost, however at that stage the body count was much higher.

 

In 2007 the Chairman admitted its more than likely $100 billion at risk. He published a list of known “potential disasters.” Consumers were made to “be alert, be careful.” How can consumers be alert to the names of the repeat offenders, when ASIC sits on those names as if a protective gang member?

 

ASIC continually and gleefully leaves older decent hard-working Australians at risk of being targeted by white collar criminals who inhabit the exceptionally dangerous world of Australian financial products.

 

ASIC has proven for twenty years it is incapable of telling the truth and incapable of any serious investigation, writing continual stream of “Fob Off” letters to isolated and stressed out citizens who dare to complain.

 

I complained to a Commissioner in 2013 about the fact that most letters sent to complainants suggested: “Investigation conducted (false)….not in the public interest to proceed…….. your money has been stolen so now get a lawyer.” This is a standard response and unacceptable. He agreed, yet the same responses continue.

 

Now in 2019, I have gathered together the victims of the STERLING GROUP and handed over several key pieces of evidence on ASIC’s epic failures in relation to Consumer

 

 

 

Protection and failure to warn the public of known offenders who inhabit ASIC’s secret and hidden “rogues gallery.”

 

Time and again the same names appear. ASIC has often been criticised as a do-nothing regulator, but this latest collapse, whilst small by comparison, may be the key to opening up ASIC’s Pandora’s Box.

 

On behalf of aggrieved consumers, I do not wish to receive an inappropriate response to this very grievous situation of criminal neglect by our Australian Federal regulator.

 

ASIC has received 20 years of evidence of known risks to consumers and the names of the repeat offenders who are continually let off the hook.

 

 

RED FLAGS

 

You Sir as Treasurer (and or Treasury Officials) meet with ASIC once per month. The purpose becomes discussion on recent corporate trends and specifically worrisome business models that raise red flags for consumers. The victims of Sterling are being treated as if the main policy is one of ‘Buyer Beware.’

 

In Oct 2017 Medcraft admitted “Australia is the white-collar crime haven of the world.” I have come to the same conclusion after 30 meetings with commissioners and officers over a 21 years journey of pleading for justice for consumers whose complaints are not only legitimate but evidenced by the appalling criminal neglect on the part of ASIC.

 

There is no consumer protection in Australia at this moment. There is no Corporate Cop on the beat. The $450 million budget is a complete waste of money. Instead we have Keystone Kops. ASIC permits a misuse of public funds. An immediate remedy is sought.

 

We ask the Treasury to please arrange for the immediate and urgent payment of the $36 million we seek in order to settle these matters as expeditiously as possible. We have older people who are living in substandard structures and threatened with eviction; landlords who have 100% loans (debt) and no income (due to stolen funds) via seven banks; plus aggrieved so called “investors,” who are immediately left for years without income but loaded up with fakes shares in non-listed companies. We are calling for moratoriums on the mortgage loans due to this diabolical situation.

 

CONSUMER PROTECTION IS A MYTH

 

ASIC cannot suggest Consumer Protection and then work against Consumers best interests for 20 years. What a disgraceful way for a regulator to behave, leaving an extraordinarily high number of decent citizens very upset.

 

Once again, we find a long and sustained “asset-stripping” spree on ordinary citizens. How that continuing activity assists the economy is beyond my comprehension.

 

ASIC also condoned and permitted the creating wealth industry to flourish and promoted it as being legitimate on the ASIC website to enable the theft of even more funds. Those people who were self-sufficient are once again targeted and later finding themselves unprotected and asking Centrelink for assistance.

 

Corruption is the only explanation. This neglect is beyond being “lazy.” The current $450 million budget is a waste of money for these glorified librarians. The top brass receives at least $6 million in salary packages and the idea of “performance bonuses” is a joke as suggested in the Hayne Royal Commission.

 

I note that Mr Shipton’s performance, conduct and arrogance and attitude to consumers in the witness stand was appalling by any standards.

 

May I add, Consumer Protection is not my job, but due to regulatory neglect it has turned into my voluntary 30-year career, in my spare time.

 

I expect to receive a positive, immediate outcome and urgent response of when the sought-after compensation funds of $ 36 million will be made available. Older people are becoming quite stressed; and suffering medical conditions that require immediate attention.

 

At least three are suffering from terminal illness. Please consider this matter as one of top priority.

 

Yours faithfully

 

 

 

Denise L Brailey

 

  

 

 

 

Denise L Brailey

 

President of BFCSA (Inc)BaPSc, BaLS, BaCrim, Adv Dip Accting.

 

Banking and Finance Consumers Support Association (Inc)

 

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www.bfcsa.com.au

 

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