;AWFUEL – The Legal Newswire – The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) today obtained court orders winding up an unregistered property investment scheme operated by the Max Development Group (previously known as the Glen Group) which raised almost $4 million from approximately 60 investors.
The Supreme Court of Queensland appointed Messrs Andrew Fielding and David Whyte, of PPB Accountants, as liquidators of Jasmine Ink Pty Ltd, Max Qld Development Group Pty Ltd and Macquarie Longford Estate Pty Ltd and the unregistered managed investment scheme run by the companies.
The Court also made declarations that the individuals behind the companies and scheme, brothers Kevin Maxwell from Southport, Queensland, and Warren Maxwell from Crestmead, Queensland, had contravened the Corporations Act by operating an unregistered managed investment scheme, carrying on a financial service business and providing financial services without an Australian financial services licence. The Court also granted injunctions permanently restraining the brothers from engaging in similar conduct in the future.
Today’s action follows interim orders obtained by ASIC on 28 February 2007 which
appointed Messrs Fielding and Whyte as receivers and managers over the companies, scheme, and property of Kevin and Warren Maxwell. The Court has also previously restrained the companies and the Maxwell brothers from further promoting or operating the scheme or dealing with their personal and company assets.
ASIC’s Executive Director of Enforcement, Ms Jan Redfern, said the registration of managed investment schemes with ASIC and the licensing of financial advisers was a requirement of the law designed to protect the interests of investors.
‘Operators of managed investment schemes must ensure that the scheme is registered with ASIC. Those individuals who fail to do so are breaking the law and will be pursued by ASIC’, Ms Redfern said.
The scheme, which appears to have been operating since about 2002, raised approximately $4 million from investors for the purchase and development of various properties in Queensland and Tasmania.
In some cases, the Max Development Group assisted investors to acquire funds to invest in the scheme by arranging loans and, in other cases, by arranging the roll-over of superannuation benefits into self-managed superannuation funds, which they set up for investors.
Many investors became concerned and complained to ASIC when they did not receive interest payments or the return of their capital in accordance with the terms of their agreements and were unable to contact any of the promoters of the scheme or representatives of the companies.