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Storm Financial adviser beats charge

The Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions has announced it has withdrawn its charge against former Storm Financial adviser Wally Fullerton-Smith.

Mr Fullerton-Smith faced a charge of making a false or misleading statement to obtain a financial advantage, with the trial due to commence this month, an ASIC statement reveals.

However, due to the recent death of an elderly prosecution witness, the prosecutor has withdrawn the charge following a “reassessment of the evidence”.

Mr Fullteron-Smith received a life ban in November 2012.

The former Storm adviser is also a former Australian and Queensland representative Rugby League player.

A previous ASIC statement from December 2013 explained the charges faced by Mr Fullerton-Smith when he appeared before the Downing Centre Local Court in Sydney at that time.

“The conduct allegedly occurred when Mr Fullerton-Smith was procuring the couple’s units, valued at approximately $706,436.94, in an MLC MasterKey Unit Trust as security for the trust margin loan account,” the statement explained.

“Specifically, it is alleged it was implied the investment would be safe if the couple signed documents authorising a third party mortgage over it as security for a proposed loan to either Mr Fullerton-Smith and his wife or The Young Trust, of which he was the trustee and he and his wife were primary beneficiaries, while omitting to inform them of the true nature and effect of the documents.”

The case prompted financial services lawyer Peter Bobbin to make comments to ifa emphasising the differences between ethical and legal misdemeanours.