Wednesday 11 October 2006 LAWFUEL – Law News, Law Jobs – Mr Duncan E…

Wednesday 11 October 2006 LAWFUEL – Law News, Law Jobs – Mr Duncan Ernest Howarth, of Ringwood, Victoria, has pleaded guilty in the Melbourne Magistrates Court on dishonesty charges brought by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). These charges follow an investigation by ASIC into the activities of Mr Howarth’s company, Presidential Financial Services Pty Ltd (PFS), and his conduct as an insurance broker.

ASIC alleges that between May 2004 and June 2005, Mr Howarth arranged loans totalling approximately $1.4 million for himself and seven PFS clients by falsely claiming they were to be used to pay insurance premiums. The alleged insurance policies quoted by Mr Howarth were fictitious and the funds obtained were used by Mr Howarth and his clients for other purposes. PFS received approximately $97,275 in fees and commissions from the firms for arranging the insurance premium funding loans.

Mr Howarth is scheduled to appear before the County Court on 28 February 2007 for plea hearing. The Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions is prosecuting the matter. For further information contact: Allen Turton Deputy Executive Director, Enforcement Telephone: 02 9911 2338 Mobile: 0411 549 236 Emma Forehan ASIC Media Unit Telephone: 03 9280 3354 Mobile: 0409 702 310 Page 1 of 1

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