• subs-bellGet the latest news! Subscribe to the ifa bulletin

ASIC permanently bans former Spring FG-aligned adviser

The corporate regulator has permanently banned a former Spring FG-aligned adviser after an investigation found he was involved in falsifying Westpac finance letters to receive commissions.

In a statement, ASIC said Nicholas Hunter was selling properties on behalf of Queensland-based property development company MOGS, and collected commission of between $10,000 and $25,000 per sale.

Mr Hunter, who advised a number of SMSF clients to invest in property in 2012, was found to be involved in falsifying Westpac finance letters to MOGS to facilitate payments of his commissions, ASIC said.

In addition, Mr Hunter operated a financial services company website and provided advice to several SMSF clients without a license or authorisation.

ASIC Commissioner Greg Tanzer said, "ASIC has recently focused our 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 through SMSF to constitute financial advice. Further, the adviser must act in the best interests of the client in giving that advice," he said.

Mr Hunter was an authorised representative of various financial services licensees dating back to 2002, and his most recent appointment was with Spring FG between May 2011 and June 2012.