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  • Charles Ponzi replied to the topic Are lsbc lawyers immune from ethics in the forum
    The Duties of Lawyers in NSW

    By Sydney Criminal Lawyers | 03/01/2018 | No Comments

    By Paul Gregoire and Ugur Nedim

    The Legal Profession Uniform Law (Uniform Law) came into effect in both NSW and Victoria on 1 July 2015. It provides the legal framework for the administration of the merged legal systems across the neighbouring states.

    The market for legal services across the two states accounts for 70 percent of the nation’s legal professionals.

    The Uniform Law established two bodies: the five member Legal Services Council and the Office of the Commissioner for Uniform Legal Services Regulation. The council sets out the rules and policies that underpin the Uniform Law, while the commissioner oversees dispute resolution.

    Under the Uniform Law, the Legal Profession Uniform Law Application Regulation 2015 provides the practicalities of applying the legal framework, while the Legal Profession Uniform General Rules 2015 outlines the rules that govern the legal system as a whole.

    And enacted on the same day as the Uniform Law, the Legal Profession Uniform Law Australian Solicitors’ Conduct Rules 2015 (Conduct Rules) outlines the responsibilities and duties of NSW solicitors, including those relating to relations with clients and other lawyers.

    A solicitor’s obligations

    Solicitors in Sydney, and indeed, right across the state of NSW, are bound by a set of duties once they take their oath and sign the roll of Australian lawyers. Rule 3 of the Conduct Rules states that a solicitor’s paramount duty is to the court and the administration of justice.

    Rule 4 provides a list of other duties that fall upon a solicitor. These include acting in a client’s best interests, being honest and courteous during practice, delivering competent and diligent legal services, and “avoiding compromise to their integrity and professional independence.”

    Solicitors are prohibited from engaging in conduct which suggests they are “not a fit and proper person to practice law” throughout all aspects of their life – not just during their working hours.

    Solicitors are also required to ensure they honour all undertakings to perform legal work for clients and perform that work in a timely manner.

    Client relations

    The client/solicitor relationship is one of the most fundamental of our legal system.

    It is classified as a fiduciary duty, where clients places their “confidence, good faith, reliance and trust” in the hands of their lawyer.

    Confidentiality is key to this relationship. A solicitor must ensure that any conversations, correspondences and documentation that involve a client be kept confidential between the two parties, and only revealed to others in limited situations.

    Before a solicitor begins working for a client, they must disclose in writing how much they will charge, along with other expenses. Known as cost disclosure, this practice should be followed up with regular invoices that outline what services the client is being billed for, and the charge for each of those services.


    A solicitor must not allow their own interests, or those of others they associate with, conflict with the interests of their client. In most circumstances, a solicitor should not represent an individual who is in a dispute with one of their current or former clients, as this could create a conflict of interest.

    The specifics of the client/solicitor relationship must be transparent at all times. A client should receive regular written updates about the progress of their cases. And a solicitor must provide advice about all practical courses of action.

    Lawyers must also take the time to explain the law and legal processes to their client. Solicitor must always follow their clients’ instructions, and do so in a timely manner, and in compliance with the law. This means it is improper to act upon directions from a client’s family member or friend, rather than from the client him or herself, unless certain exceptional circumstances are involved.

    Duties to others

    The Conduct Rules also outline the duties solicitors have to other people. These include not taking advantage of another lawyer or other person in order to benefit their client if the act has no “supportable foundation in law or fact.”

    A solicitor who becomes aware that any disclosed materials are confidential, and therefore should not have been supplied to them, should notify the opposing lawyer or other person involved immediately. The materials should be returned or destroyed.

    Lawyers must also refrain from making allegations of unsatisfactory professional conduct or misconduct against another Australian legal practitioner, unless they have sufficient material to establish the claim against that particular lawyer.

    Fit and proper conduct

    Contact with another solicitor’s client or clients is forbidden for NSW solicitors, unless a prior arrangement has been made with the other lawyer, or the solicitor reasonably believes there is a level of urgency that warrants the contact.

    Whilst representing their client, a solicitor must not act or communicate to an extent that exceeds the rights of the client, or misleads or intimidates other people. Nor should they threaten criminal proceedings against another person if a civil liberty of their client’s is not satisfied.

    In promoting their practice, a NSW solicitor must not seek instructions for the provision of legal services in a manner that harasses another person, who due to a recent trauma or injury might be at a disadvantage by dealing with the solicitor at the time the instructions were sought.

    And if a solicitor engages with a third party on behalf of their client, but is not intending to pay them personally, the solicitor must advise that party in advance. This may apply to medical practitioners or other experts that are engaged to prepare reports and the like.

    Ongoing training

    All NSW solicitors are required to hold a current practising certificate in order to practise law. The certificate acts a formal agreement to abide by the profession’s rules and codes of conduct, and must be renewed annually.

    As part of the requirements for a practising certificate, a solicitor must commit to mandatory continuing professional development training, which ensures they stay abreast of developments in ethical and professional responsibilities, as well as professional skills and of course the law.

    ‘Accredited Specialist lawyers’ are required to undertake a greater number of hours of yearly legal training than other solicitors. These lawyers are certified by the Law Society of NSW as experts in their field of law. Areas of specialist accreditation include criminal law, family law and personal injury law.

    These rules and regulations are designed to ensure that when members of the general public come to the point where they need to engage with a NSW solicitor, they can do so with trust, and without fear of having their confidentiality breached.

    9 hours 41 minutes ago
  • Charles Ponzi replied to the topic Offences: The Conversation news in the forum
    "Criminal charges
    Turning to more general offences, here criminal penalties range from 12 months in jail for misleading ASIC, to significant penalties for conspiracy to defraud.
    Any bank employee who was involved in the creation of misleading documentation might well be exposed to fraud charges. Under Commonwealth and state law, fraud can involve reckless deception of another (either ASIC or the clients) with an intention to gain a financial advantage for another (AMP or CBA) Those offences have maximum penalties of 10 years jail. There is a range of lesser charges from general dishonesty to false documentation offences.
    Those who assisted might well also be liable through accessorial liability.
    Prosecutors could also turn to the conspiracy to defraud offence. The Commonwealth version of the offence involves an agreement to dishonestly influence a public official’s decisions. An agreement to provide false documents to ASIC would seem easily to fit this offence. Again, this has a maximum penalty of 10 years. ...."…

    9 hours 57 minutes ago
  • Charles Ponzi replied to the topic Mt Morris Station - in the forum
    A history of Mount Morris Station Charleville Queensland shared a post.
    8 hrs ·

    Bank Reform Now
    April 14 at 5:35am ·
    The #BigBankBANG to be announced Sunday April 22. Will you be prepared to take action to bring an end to criminal banking? We're starting with #CBA. Guess why?
    If we are to succeed with our reform agenda we must hit CBA where it hurts. Right between their brand reputation and bottom line. The only things bankers care about.
    ALERT - This Monday - April 16 - the Royal Commission recommences in Melbourne. Check out our Press Release tomorrow morning - 11 Key Performance Indicators. Link will be right here on If we're not in your feed that day visit our F.Book page directly or check out our website.
    Also - contact Dario Pappalardo to join in the fun at the Royal Commission starting 9am Monday - more details tomorrow.
    #NoShamRC #Narev #Comyn

  • Charles Ponzi created a new topic ' Press Release: Prey turn Predator' in the forum.
    Press Release;

    Re CBA I.T Dept Scandal.

    We registered as Whistleblowers with the US SEC Office of the Whistleblower and they arrested the top level I.T executives in the CBA. And the I.T Expert to people like the Clintons, in Mr Eric Pulier.
    There's other whistleblowers on many issues, eg the bbsw rate rigging , and the US Organized Crime Drug Enforcment Task Force arrests of Mastercard's lawyer Keila Ravelo with Reserve Bank documents that were falsified in US antitrust litigation.

    As bank victims we hope to see the Royal Commission compare the culture of cover up to how the US rounds up crims and accomplices on the other side of the world.
    We also hope to get a US Bounty of 30% of forefeited assets if these bankers and their minions are carted off in chains to Alcatraz.
    Ask for Dario Pappalardo - he's the one at the RC with a voodoo doll - if you're covering the BankReformNow/Citizens Electoral Council protest on Monday at the Royal Commission in Melbourne.

    Our Whistleblwers turned from Prey to Predator - and we want scalps from ASIC's director Fiona Bennett's legal services board.

    There could be a story in that.

    Spencer "As Seen on A Current Affair" Murray

  • Charles Ponzi replied to the topic Barnaby Joyce says he's disturbed in the forum
    Government to thank for the banks inquiry; Kelly O’Dwyer
    Kelly O'Dwyer. Picture: Britta Campion.
    Kelly O'Dwyer. Picture: Britta Campion.

    The Australian
    11:37AM April 19, 2018
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    Greg Brown

    UPDATED: Opposition finance spokesman Jim Chalmers has said AMP’s actions in falsely charging customers would be within the law if the government had had its way and abolished the Future of Financial Advice reforms.

    Earlier, Financial Services Minister Kelly O’Dwyer said the government had been vindicated in its decision to establish a financial services royal commission — despite being strongly against the probe and begrudgingly establishing it because of a revolt from the Nationals.

    But Mr Chalmers accused the government of hypocrisy in its new support for the inquiry.

    “Let’s not forget that O’Dwyer and the Liberals wanted to bring back dodgy commissions for financial advisers and the conflicts of interest and poor quality advice that comes with them.

    “The cavalcade of Coalition Ministers and MPs commenting about the revelations coming from the banking Royal Commission is breathtaking in its hypocrisy.

    read more
    Bankers risk jail time: MorrisonRICHARD GLUYAS, BEN BUTLER
    Here comes the banks shake-outJames Kirby
    Corporate rip-offs a wake-up callJohn Durie

    “Labor called for a royal commission into the banking and financial services sector more than two years ago.”

    Ms O’Dwyer told ABC radio the government could take credit for establishing the Hayne royal commission because it was more broad than the one Labor had advocated, which was focused on the big four banks.

    Ms O’Dwyer claimed the government's broader terms of reference ensured AMP executives were able to be grilled at the royal commission, which has led to revelations the financial services giant had falsely charged customers and misled the corporate regulator.

    “I think it is right that we have a broad inquiry that can look into all aspects of misconduct in the financial services sector, the ALP had argued for a very narrow one simply into the banks,” Ms O’Dwyer said.

    “The revelations we have heard about AMP are included in the scope because of the inquiry we put in place and, frankly, I think we are hearing things that would mean that we have done the right thing in introducing the royal commission and we are looking forward to the recommendations that are (going to be) provided by the independent royal commissioner.”

    When asked if it was wrong for the government to oppose Labor’s push for a royal commission for 18 months, Ms O’Dwyer said: “It is the government’s decision to implement a royal commission with broad powers, that’s what has happened and that is what is occurring now”.

    Malcolm Turnbull and Scott Morrison announced the establishment of a royal commission in December after Nationals MPs had vowed to cross the floor and vote in favour of one with Labor and the Greens in a move that would have embarrassed the government.

    In announcing the move, the Prime Minister said it was a “necessary but regrettable action” that happened because of political circumstances.

    “The government’s policy remains the same until it is changed,” he said in November.

    In hearings yesterday, a senior Commonwealth Bank executive admitted the institution was a “gold medallist” in ripping off its advice clients.

    It came after the Treasurer warned AMP executives faced up to five years in jail for misleading the corporate regulator.

    Former deputy prime minister Barnaby Joyce last night said he was wrong for opposing a royal commission while he was in cabinet.

    “In the past I argued against a royal commission into banking. I was wrong. What I have heard is so far is beyond disturbing,” Mr Joyce tweeted.

    Ms O’Dwyer said this morning she “absolutely” thought banking executives should go to jail if they misled the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.

    “We as the government are very disturbed by a number of the revelations that have been revealed recently at the royal commission,” she said.

    “It is fair to say that giving the royal commission broad terms of reference, giving it broad autonomy to go after bad misconduct and to look into that right into the financial services sector was absolutely the right thing to do.”

  • Charles Ponzi replied to the topic Jennie Paluka's customer Suzi Burge says: in the forum
    I just chocked on my Weeties.......

    On the 21st November 2016 a few of us from the Canberra Bank Rally had a meeting with Kelly O'Dwyer. Her focus appeared to be on the Kate Carnell Inquiry and she was aware of my matter as I was one of Kate's 'Deep Dive 8' cases. However the meeting was largely unproductive. I have written to Kelly on numerous occasions requesting a further meeting to discuss why none of us have been restored when the evidence in relation to our matters was overwhelming good.

    Kelly has chosen to ignore my requests for a meeting.

    These guys did not want a RC and can not take credit for it. The people forced this RC (all of us) and as it is now becoming bigger than Ben Hur, Kelly and Co. are now trying to take credit for it!

    Too little..... Too late.......

    "It came after the Treasurer warned AMP executives faced up to five years in jail for misleading the corporate regulator."

    "Ms O’Dwyer said this morning she “absolutely” thought banking executives should go to jail if they misled the Australian Securities and Investments Commission."

    Kelly...... what about misleading the people of Australia? The people that have been fleeced and destroyed need to be restored and those involved Jailed! We will demand not only full restitution but full prosecution!
    ‘We did right thing on banks’
    Financial Services Minister Kelly O’Dwyer says the government has been vindicated in its decision to establish a financial services royal commission — despite being strongly against the probe and begrudgingly establishing it…

  • Charles Ponzi replied to the topic Chantileer says coruption endemic in the forum
    Chanticleer: The Royal Commission is now in danger of under-delivering solutions because Australian bank corruption is so systemic that tackling it is like trying to swallow an elephant.

    The royal commission yesterday also heard that AMP — sometimes described as the fifth pillar of the financial system, after the big banks — had since 2009 developed “serious compliance concerns”, a phrase used by ASIC to include fraud and dishonesty. AMP admits to misleading customers!!!

    Here is one answer, from Chanticleer:
    The awful revelations about the propensity for companies to lie to the regulator and the willingness of financial planners to put their interests ahead of customers ought to prompt royal commissioner Kenneth Hayne to make findings about the remuneration practices at the upper levels of the major banks and AMP.

    …One solution available to Hayne, which is probably being considered by Byres, is to demand that boards of directors use their power to cancel or amend deferred bonus payments. These clawback provisions have rarely been used in Australia.

    I’ve studied in detail the intense corruption of US banking behind the GFC and there is nothing above that would not fit right in.

    The Royal Commission is now in danger of under-delivering solutions because Australian bank corruption is so systemic that tackling it is like trying to swallow an elephant.

    2 days ago
  • Charles Ponzi replied to the topic CBA wins gold medal in the forum
    Business Review
    National Affairs
    Higher Ed

    Banking royal commission: Commonwealth Bank agrees it’s a rip-off ‘gold medallist’
    Commonwealth Bank next in line at Royal Commission
    Between 2007 and 2015, CBA and its financial planning subsidiaries failed to provide annual reviews to more than 30,000 customers. Pic: Hollie Adams
    Between 2007 and 2015, CBA and its financial planning subsidiaries failed to provide annual reviews to more than 30,000 customers. Pic: Hollie Adams


    The Australian
    12:46PM April 18, 2018
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    Ben Butler
    Business Reporter

    A Commonwealth Bank executive has admitted the country’s biggest bank is the “gold medallist” when it comes to ripping off financial advice customers by charging them for services they do not receive.

    Linda Elkins, the executive general manager of CBA division Colonial First State, has been giving evidence at the financial services royal commission today.

    The commission has heard that between 2007 and 2015, CBA and its financial planning subsidiaries failed to provide annual reviews to more than 30,000 customers.

    It has paid $118 million in refunds to customers who paid money for services they never received.

    “You’d be the gold medallist if ASIC was handing out medals for fee for no service,” counsel assisting the commission, Mark Costello said.

    read more
    A big wake up call for businessJohn Durie
    CBA dips ahead of grillingStuart Condie
    AMP ‘breaching fee charge laws’Ben Butler

    “Yes,” Ms Elkins responded.

    Scandals at CBA’s financial planning subsidiaries were among the factors that helped build pressure for a royal commission into the banks, and Ms Elkins acknowledged the lender had breached the Corporations Act.

    However, she admitted that despite the breaches Colonial had not considered kicking other CBA subsidiaries off its investment platform.

    “No, knowing the action the entity was taking satisfied us we didn’t need to take any further action,” she said.

    She said she was focused on the remediation efforts undertaken by the CBA planning groups.

    Mr Costello put it to her that it was “inconceivable” that Colonial would kick a fellow bank subsidiary such as Commonwealth Financial Planning off its platform.

    “I would have to agree that’s unlikely,” Ms Elkins said.

    “I don’t know that it’s inconceivable.”

    2 days ago
  • Charles Ponzi created a new topic ' James Johnson & Howard Bowles' in the forum.

    James Johnson CHR (@JamesJohnsonCHR) said...

    Hello, and good work, Michael,

    I filed a formal complaint with the Victorian Legal Services Commissioner a couple of weeks back, requesting a proper investigation into the allegations of lawyer misconduct against Julia Gillard that have resurfaced in the media.

    As far as I am aware stories have been circulating since the AWU scandal and Julia Gillard were mentioned in Victorian Parliament (captured on Hansard) way back in 1996. That was about the time Julia was a staffer for Victorian Premier Joan Kirner (remember her) and then for Victorian opposition leader (Premier towards the end of 1998 - 2010) John Brumby.

    You can download a full copy of the formal complaint that I filed with the Victorian Legal Services Commissioner (also mentioned on Andrew Bolt's blog) via the links that are set out in this tweet:

    #POLITICS: Latest on #Lawyeorocracy on Trial AND PM @JuliaGillard #awu lawyer misconduct investigations #auspol #QandA

    The formal complaint I fild (downloadable via two links embeded inside that tweet / link) is also a good introduction to the corruption, hypocrisy and misconduct attendant on this legal regulatory process (viz part of the explanation why any dirt has been so well covered up and over for more than a decade). The Legal Services Commissioner scheme is built-owned-operated by lawyers at massive public waste and expense as a protection racket (the bad and ugly protecting the bad and ugly of the lawyers world). It is not an independent regulatory scheme. But no need to overload you with the scary truth about who our lawyers (and their lawyer-mates in the bureaucracy, judiciary and parliaments) are really serving. You can unravel the tale from here.

    Best wishes
    James Johnson CHR
    Independent Candidate for Lalor
    Journalist. Whistleblower
    Consitututional Human Rights Advocate
    Solicitor and Barrister of the High Court of Australia
    (Celebrating 20 Years of Legal Practice 1990 - 2010)
    Reply Monday, 24 September 2012 at 05:05 PM

    2 days ago
  • Clayton Utz embroiled in royal commission saga
    Big Law
    18 April 2018
    By: Aleks Vickovich

    Clayton Utz partners have been accused of being influenced by their client AMP in producing a so-called independent review of misconduct at the financial services giant.

    Appearing before the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry yesterday, AMP group executive Jack Regan was grilled about a review of its controversial client book buyback policy conducted by Clayton Utz.

    Counsel assisting Michael Hodge QC grilled the executive over an intense six-hour cross-examination, tabling evidence of teleconferences, email exchanges and draft conversations between top brass executives at AMP, its in-house legal team and Clayton Utz partners, especially commercial litigator Nicholas Mavrakis.

    “Is this consistent with your understanding of how an independent report would be prepared?” Mr Hodge asked Mr Regan.

    “I agree there’s a lot of exchanges there,” Mr Regan conceded. “It would be up to [Clayton Utz partner Nicholas] Mavrakis to decide on the degree of independence.”

    Mr Regan went on to reveal that the AMP board met and approved changes to the final report following the ostensibly independent review and that AMP chair Catherine Brenner make specific requests for amendment.

    The revelations come despite an email from Clayton Utz to Ms Brenner acknowledging the instructions to “undertake an independent review”.

    “Why would the board be approving changes to an independent report?” Mr Hodge asked.

    “Because it was a report being accepted by the board,” Mr Regan said.

    Mr Hodge suggested that the independent report was subsequently relied upon in evidence provided by AMP to ASIC.

    “And do you feel any discomfort at having met with ASIC and said to them, ‘this is an independent report’ in light of what you've now seen?” Mr Hodge asked.

    “There is a level of discomfort, yes.”

    On several occasions Mr Regan deflected to Mr Mavrakis, suggesting the Clutz partner was better placed to determine whether the report and review could reasonably be considered independent.

    In closing the day’s proceedings, Commissioner Ken Hayne indicated that he considered the evidence of the Clayton Utz report to be significant.

    “In view of the evidence given by Mr Regan, there may be some question about what conclusions, if any, I may reach about the extent to which senior management or others associated with AMP sought to influence or did influence content of the report by Clayton Utz apparently submitted to ASIC as an independent report,” the former High Court judge said.

    “It is a matter for AMP and its advisers whether it seeks to have some opportunity to provide any material which goes beyond the evidence given by Mr Regan about that matter.”

    The royal commission’s second round of hearings on financial advice and wealth management continue today.

    To follow what's happening at the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry, head to Lawyers Weekly's sister publication ifa, where the team is offering a real-time rundown of all the action.

    2 days ago
  • Charles Ponzi replied to the topic Free FBI training refused: Mr Simon Smith in the forum
    What does Simon say in regards to APAC Regulators Set to Up Cyber-scrutiny in the Asia Pacific?

    "Too late. The Government apparently thinks they are doing a wonderful job now", Mr. Smith said.

    "What can I say, or should I even say anything at all? Australia - you are about 10 years too late. I am of sheer disbelief. On a daily basis, catching cyber-scammers and cyber-stalkers, fraudsters and being at the forefront of white collar crime, having seen all the representations that the Australian Government make, I'd like to set some home truths", is what Mr. Smith said earlier today.

    "The Australian Government has invested millions of dollars into the so-called awareness of cyber-crime and further, enforcement and so-called reporting via ACORN. This agency has turned out to be a complete waste of taxpayers money as it is not only useless, it is actually worse than useless, it lets scammers run away and gives the police a scapegoat to pass on the job of doing any real detective work", Mr. Smith said.

    Mr. Smith has had a lot of cases in dealing with Cyber-crime at the forefront and producing factual evidence for use in court. He has solved scam and stalking cases that police could not solve in over 5 years. He has been very successful in his investigations and has appeared on local television of recent times on both the Today show, the Today Extras show as well as the 7:30 report on the ABC.

    "I came into a situation recently where I found key information in a multi-million dollar SCAM and at the speed of lightning gave this information through ACORN and then it was one of the lucky ones that actually made it to the police. The next minute some untrained, borderline primary school IT level police 'detective' assigned by ACORN rings me up and refuses to look at my factual findings. The reasons given were egotistical. After a report to the relevant authorities, and then the Ombudsman as it turns out he was wrong at fact and had no idea what he was talking about", Mr. Smith stated. Mr. Smith likes to help out his clients' through the entire process and when resistance is seen by the police it is often frustrating for the victim. He is also a Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner and has written textbook material on Grief and Trauma and knows the aftermath of such a crisis. He understands the impact victims have in these situations, such empathy, he states, police and authorities lack.

    "My client lost all his money and ended up in a mental institution. Every single day I am told by clients that they are turned away from the police with a variety of excuses. There is clearly an inability even to refer correctly, which shows a real systemic problem. When it comes to Financial crimes, this is something I have had a lot of experience with. The regulator's can pretend to take action and make changes but at the end of the day it comes down to sheer scapegoating and liability shifting", said Mr. Smith.

    When Mr. Smith was asked if there were enough police resources to combat Cybercrime he said, "Yes, they have access to free training via the FBI but choose not to use it".

    When Mr. Smith was asked if the banks have genuine and reliable software solutions to detect Fraud he stated, "In my expert opinion as a professional software developer of 20 years, not they most certainly don't. Not only do they not have good enough software, the weakest link is in any information system is the people. Their fraud department is a big team of legal counsel trying to pass liability somewhere else. They have guarantees they have to abide by - and I know what they are."

    He went on to say, "The average consumer doesn't realise this and they play on that. I've seen it happen. That's going to change. With respect to the police training, experts like me have to pay and attain the best Australia has and/or grow up at the exact right time at the dawning of the birth of the internet and further go elsewhere to get Department of Homeland Security recognised Certifications."

    Mr. Smith works a lot with family violence cases providing strategic evidence in his capacity as an investigator with special talents in family law cases. He has trained barristers, lawyers and psychologists to become Commonwealth appointed Family Dispute Resolution Practitioners. He quite passionately stated, "When you have teenagers committing suicide for cyber-bullying and cyber-scammers taking every last cent away from people, and the AFP, the police and especially the banks pushing you away to avoid liability, the consumers get frustrated. I for one have seen people get scammed from IP addresses I've reported to ACORN over a year ago recently."

    He went on to say, "So is it really just a 'more dynamic and forward looking supervisory approach' that is needed or is it just some fancy words to make the Government of the day pretend they know what they are talking about. I have helped so many people with Financial crimes where the banks, police, AFP and AUSTRAC should have now known what to do but were simply too lazy to help. With all the powers of Interpol, I have heard stories like, "We have no jurisdiction overseas", when just a few weeks I did a case which led to an overseas Interpol investigation."

    Finally Mr. Smith said that the banking sector isn't as honest as they make out to be. "The Banking Sector and Remittance Providers better look out because I for one am onto their tricks. Sending customers away to report Cyber-crime when they are merely avoiding liability under their contractual agreements is something that I picked up a long time ago. I guess in the next few years you can expect to see a lot more law suits against banks for breach of contract and negligence in their deficient fraud detection systems", Mr. Smith said.

    Mr. Smith is working on programs to help educate consumers to knows their rights when it comes to banks and credit card fraud.

    He appears to be pioneering in an area that not many have ventured but is willing to look after the little guy just as much as his High-Tech crime major cases. Simon Smith is a Computer Forensic Expert and can be contacted at or

    3 days ago
  • Charles Ponzi replied to the topic Big4 Banks: Nick McKenzie in the forum
    September 15 2017 - 7:19AM
    It's not just CBA: all the banks are exposed to millions in money laundering

    Nick McKenzie, Richard Baker, Georgina Mitchell

    Crime groups are washing millions a day of dirty money through Australia's big banks. Photo: Tanya Lake
    Crime groups are washing millions a day of dirty money through Australia's big banks. Photo: Tanya Lake

    Gaping holes in the anti-money laundering systems of Australia's big banks are being exploited by crime groups to wash up to $5 million in drug cash a day, according to confidential briefings by federal and state policing agencies.

    New details of police investigations reveal that the big four banks – Westpac, ANZ, NAB and CBA – have all been used by money laundering syndicates to launder drug funds offshore.

    Syndicates are also suspected to have infiltrated the franchises of mid-tier banks. Police have gathered intelligence that an outlaw bikie group is examining acquiring the franchise of a mid-tier bank, while the Bank of Queensland's Punchbowl branch in Sydney was closed after Mexican cartel drug money washed funds through its accounts in 2010.

    An Australian Crime Commission "High Risk Funds" investigation, which was examining the movement of illicit cash to the former Yugoslavia in 2012, identified a Bendigo Bank franchise that seemed to be involved.

    Anti-money laundering agency Austrac's decision last month to launch legal action against the Commonwealth Bank lifted the lid on that bank's alleged lack of oversight of massive money flows.

    But the latest revelations underscore what is an open secret in the law enforcement and banking communities: weak laws and questionable banking practices have enabled crime figures to open individual or company accounts or deposit funds with minimal or false identification, and quietly move millions of dollars.
    Ticking the boxes

    Government officials said the public would be shocked to know the amount of drug money that was laundered on a daily basis, and the ease with which it finds its way out of Australia.

    The former National Coordinator of the Commonwealth Asset Confiscation Taskforce, Nick McTaggart, who recently worked for Austrac as a senior adviser, said the failure of major banks and other financial institutions to carry out basic due diligence likely placed them in breach of "know your customer" requirements.

    Exacerbating the problem is the failure of financial institutions to share information with each other, or to access information from the federal government or police, including biometric, intelligence or tax data.

    "Most financial institutions are just ticking the compliance boxes rather than doing the necessary due diligence," Mr McTaggart said.

    "Technologies such as electronic funds transfer capability also present huge problems. Any criminal can get a company created today and bounce all the money into one account and then send it offshore and walk away from the company. No one will ask questions of the company for months."

    He welcomed the Turnbull government's proposed toughening of company director identification laws and whistleblower provisions, but added: "The government can do more to assist".
    Anti-money laundering expert John Chevis. Photo: Supplied

    Anti-money laundering expert John Chevis. Photo: Supplied

    Anti-money laundering expert John Chevis, who advises the UN Office of Drugs and Crime, said one key anti-money laundering provision had backfired.

    Laws prohibit the banks from telling customers they have been reported to Austrac. The provision is ostensibly designed to avoid tipping them off in the unlikely event police or Austrac launch an inquiry.

    What it meant, though, was that some banks continue to receive and shift drug funds despite making multiple Austrac reports about the launderers' activity.

    "This has turned an anti-money laundering law into a 'money laundering' law. There is at least one instance of the absurd situation of a single money launderer being reported over 100 times by a single bank for making 100 suspicious deposits," Mr Chevis said.
    $29m through Westpac, CBA

    In a Perth court in April this year, a fresh faced 30 year old from Hong Kong, Ka Sing Lai, was jailed for 10 years for using Westpac and Commonwealth Bank accounts to launder at least $29 million in drug funds out of Australia.

    Lai's operation was as simple as it was effective: he ferried money-runners to up to 10 Perth Westpac and CBA branches a day, depositing up to $500,000 into accounts opened by Australian front companies created by other Hong Kong nationals.

    Lai made 163 bank transactions before he was arrested in late 2015. Eight months later, in August 2016, evidence emerged suggesting he was back in business.

    A second Hong Kong national, Chi Ming To, who police first identified as a driver for Lai, was pulled over in NSW. When police searched his car, they found $550,000 cash in the boot.

    Despite being touted publicly by Justice Minister Michael Keenan as a major blow to organised crime, the arrest of Lai is privately described by senior police as a pyrrhic win in a fight in which they have been overwhelmed by money launderers easy ability to evade banking controls.
    Peter Li deposited suspected drug money into ANZ branches around Australia. Photo: James Alcock

    Peter Li deposited suspected drug money into ANZ branches around Australia. Photo: James Alcock
    On bail, back to the banks

    There's a familiar pattern to these events. On 18 November 2013, Hong Kong resident Peter Li flew into Sydney. He was granted a tourist visa and headed straight to The Star casino. In a bathroom, he was handed a yellow shopping bag police suspect was filled with hundreds of thousands of dollars in drug money.

    Just over 24 hours later, Li entered the ANZ's Sydney CBD branch on York Street and opened two accounts. He listed the casino as his place of residence.

    Then he handed over $50,000 in cash, asking for $1000 to be placed into one account and the remaining $49,000 into the second. Two days later, he shifted $20,000 from his second ANZ account into the first, into which he deposited a further $50,000 in cash.

    He then flew to Perth and entered an ANZ branch, directing a teller to make two transfers of $35,000 from his ANZ accounts to two separate Honk Kong Bank accounts. Federal agents reconstructed these events after Customs officers found Li carrying $147,000 in cash when he attempted to leave Australia five days after he had arrived in Sydney.

    Li was charged with money laundering offences and released on bail on December 4, subject to a condition that he deposit no more than $2000 into any Australian bank account.
    Happy Valentine's Day

    Ten weeks later, on February 14, 2014, Li walked into an ANZ branch in Sydney's CBD carrying a bag stuffed with suspected drug funds.

    Over the next four hours, he made 10 deposits at various ANZ branches within a few kilometres of each other. After running out of CBD ANZ bank branches, Li changed his clothes and returned to the first branch he had visited. There, he made an eleventh deposit of $9500, just under the $10,000 amount that triggers a mandatory suspicious deposit notification to Austrac.

    Li's eleven deposits of $9500 were made into the same ANZ account using a series of false names and phone numbers. On the same day, Li repeated this exercise at six NAB branches, depositing between $9000 and $9500 each time he entered the bank.

    Under the current legislative regime, the banks have no clear obligation to demand verified identification, nor to quiz Li about his activities, nor talk to other banks about Li's conduct. The law prohibits banking staff from telling Li they considered his conduct suspicious enough to report to Austrac.

    So Li kept at it. A few days later, Li chose NAB and CBA branches to deposit multiple cash amounts under $10,000. After attempting to make his eleventh cash deposit into the same CBA account, a teller asked Li for his name. He refused to answer and the teller called the NSW police.

    By the time of his arrest a few minutes later, Li had deposited $289,000 in drug funds. It had taken him just over 10 hours over two days.

    Chinese national Jun Yu Huang was an old hand at exploiting the banking system. In the 2000s, he had endured multiple stints in prison, including for setting up bank accounts with false IDs to commit fraud.

    Police documents reveal that for five months in early 2013, Huang paid a Chinese woman to ferry large amounts of cash in green Woolworths' bags to "various banks" in Sydney's CBD. Huang then took over, using false IDs to set up accounts at money remitting businesses which specialise in moving funds offshore.

    Huang used the NAB, Westpac, and CBA accounts of these remitters to deposit and move suspected drug cash to Asia. Over six weeks, Huang moved $3.2 million out of Australia, the bulk of which was moved through Westpac accounts.

    McTaggart says if banks had conducted proper due diligence by demanding and verifying Huang's true identity and quizzing him about the source and purpose of the funds, it may have deterred him. Since Huang's arrest, the major banks have stopped allowing money remitters to use the banks' accounts to move funds offshore. But the banks still move funds themselves and are vulnerable to fake IDs and so called "cleanskins."

    Then there is the case of 21 year-old Vietnamese national, Ahn Cat Chu.

    Chu had been in Australia for just seven weeks on a student visa. When she was searched by police, they found 23 blue slips of paper revealing she had deposited $204,005 in just three hours at Westpac, ANZ, and CBA branches near Sydney's Chinatown. She had entered the banks multiple times in a highly suspicious fashion, depositing amounts under $10,000.

    When police seized her mobile phone, they discovered a cell phone in Vietnam had been texting her instructions.
    Banks respond

    Law enforcement sources said that while all banks could do far more to prevent money laundering, the CBA was targeted by Austrac because its complacency and failure to address problems with its automatic cash deposit system was egregious.

    In response to questions from Fairfax Media, NAB's chief risk officer David Gall said that despite extensive efforts to prevent money laundering, "people with bad intentions will always try to commit crime".

    "That's why as a bank and an industry we have to always be vigilant and work with regulators, government and police to find new and smarter ways to prevent financial crime."

    A spokesman for Westpac said the bank was investing heavily in "verifying the identity of our customers (for example, in the case of online banking, through the use of external data verification), monitoring the activities of those customers over time, reporting any suspicious matters detected to AUSTRAC, and terminating customer relationships where appropriate".

    The Bendigo Bank said that the franchise which sent funds to the former Yugoslavia had been "appropriately monitored and any matters requiring reporting under legislation were submitted". The Bank of Queensland declined to comment on the allegation involving its now defunct Punchbowl branch.

    ANZ said its anti-money laundering controls were effective.

    Justice Minister Michael Keenan said the government had rigorous anti-money laundering measures in place and was continually working with the banking industry to strengthen them.

    3 days ago
  • Charles Ponzi replied to the topic Child exploitation says Austrac in the forum
    Child exploitation, drug importation rising money laundering risks: AUSTRAC CEO

    By Peter Ryan on AM


    Download (1.90 MB) Download 1.90 MB

    Australian Transactions Reports & Analysis Centre chief executive Nicole Rose says she is shocked at the depth of money laundering in the economy involving organised crime, child exploitation and drug importation.

    Ms Rose was appointed AUSTRAC chief in the wake of the agency's high stakes case against the Commonwealth Bank relating to almost 54,000 alleged breaches of anti money laundering and terror financing regulations.

    In her first broadcast interview since starting in the role, she told AM criminal money laundering has a massive impact on every day life that few people were aware of.
    Duration: 4min 9sec
    Broadcast: Thu 5 Apr 2018, 8:19am

    3 days ago
  • Charles Ponzi replied to the topic Investigate APRA says Dario Pappalardo in the forum

    Banking Royal Commission: Why bank executives fought so hard to stop it happening
    AMP executive Anthony Jack Regan leaves the banking royal commission in Melbourne. (Stuart McEvoy/The Australian)
    AMP executive Anthony Jack Regan leaves the banking royal commission in Melbourne. (Stuart McEvoy/The Australian)

    The Australian
    4:33PM April 17, 2018
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    James Kirby
    Wealth Editor

    Think back ... just how hard did senior financial executives fight against a royal commission?

    Entering the second phase of hearings we now realise that bad behaviour and a shocking disregard for customers interests is not confined to the big banks. AMP, one of the most respected names in the wealth industry has admitted to charging thousand of customers for financial advice services they did not receive ... and then misleading the corporate regulator about it.

    Yet, as the inquiry became inevitable at the tail end of last year, senior executives went so far as to suggest the international reputation of Australia Inc would be at risk if we had to endure an expensive regulatory clampdown.

    Royal Commission timeline
    June 26, 2014

    The Senate economics committee calls for a royal commission following a lengthy inquiry into ASIC’s performance that focused on financial planning scandals at the CBA.

    Royal Commission timeline
    April 21, 2016

    In an attempt to stave off continuing calls for a royal commission, the Australian Bankers Association announces former senior public servant Ian McPhee will oversee an overhaul of industry standards and practices.

    Royal Commission timeline
    November 30, 2017

    After years of denying a royal commission is needed, the banks write to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull asking for one. He obliges.

    Royal Commission timeline
    February 12, 2018

    Commissioner Kenneth Hayne formally opens the inquiry and sets the tone by laying into the big banks for failing to provide all the information he wanted in time.

    Royal Commission timeline
    March 13, 2018

    The commission’s first full public hearings hear about consumer credit issues including a home loan fraud ring among NAB bankers in Western Sydney and out-of-control mortgage brokers at CBA subsidiary Aussie Home Loans.

    Royal Commission timeline
    April 16, 2018

    Second round of hearings kicks off with a focus on one of the industry’s most scandal-prone sectors, financial planning.



    Lindsay Maxsted, the chairman of Westpac, said it would be it would “dangerous” to have a Royal Commission — “What sort of signal does that send to the rest of the world?” he asked late last year.

    read more
    AMP as money-grubbing as restJohn Durie
    AMP’s poor advice on full displayRICHARD GLUYAS
    CEO’s name deleted from reportBen Butler

    Ian Narev, the recently departed CEO of Commonwealth Bank, joined in around the same time with a statement that politicians and jurists too would be admitting the failure of previous inquires if the Royal Commission went ahead.

    Well, now we know why these executives were so desperate, the scandals are wider and deeper than anyone might have expected.

    The royal commission has proved already no amount of Senate hearings or “internal reviews” — where senior management may loom over timid examinations of misbehaviour — can match a full blown inquiry run by fully empowered legal experts.

    Not only do we see how banks and insurers operate but the exceptional legal powers of the commission means we get to see internal correspondence — the very cogs and wheels of the forces that run Australia
    Banking Royal Commission

    What it means for the banks
    Show More

    It is early days but there are three takeaways for investors from the inquiry so far.

    It is no use depending on laws if they are not enforced.

    The arrival of so called FoFa (Future of Financial Advice) reforms were seen as a breakthrough, but if they are not implemented thoroughly then they have limited effect.

    Higher compliance costs do not lead to better outcomes.

    The banks and leading financial institutions constantly complain — with some justification — that compliance costs are onerous. But rising compliance costs have not stopped the litany of scandals unfolding by the day.

    You can never be completely protected from bad behaviour or poor advice — active investors will always, to some degree, have to make judgments on their own behalf.

    Yes, an inquiry of this depth is an imposition on business — and shareholders will pay for this extended deliberation on banking practice.

    But investors may as well face up to facts, sooner or later bad behaviour in listed companies such as the big banks and AMP comes at a price to shareholders — the only question is how long it takes to break out into the public sphere.

    3 days ago
  • Charles Ponzi created a new topic ' AMP Testimony,' in the forum.
    Royal commission financial advice hearings - live
    - 15:11 PM, 13 Apr 2018

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    Join the ifa team for a real-time rundown of the action as the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry turns to wealth management and advice.

    Join the discussion
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    Patrick D 1 hour ago.
    How IOOF have escaped all of this so far is beyond me... are they scheduled to appear at all?
    Anonymous 2 hours ago.
    And for our next chapter, AMP meet Shareholder Class Action.
    Phillip A 2 hours ago.
    Are we seeing a changing of the guard? The findings of the RC will not create a profession, however it maybe an incremental step in the right direction.
    Anonymous 2 hours ago.
    Jack's earning his $3 million salary this week
    Anonymous 3 hours ago.
    What surprises is how the auditors did not review check or qualify the annual statements and filings. Must be a good auditor.

    Anonymous 2 hours ago.
    Wouldn't have a job if they did the right checks Id say. Just like the internal compliance department.

    Anonymous 3 hours ago.
    Are they going to get onto real advice issues some time of just focus on BOLR. Whilst there are issues there are bigger matters as well

    Anonymous 2 hours ago.
    I agree that there are many bigger issues that should be addressed, but perhaps the initial goal here is to highlight the culture that exists within senior management at AMP.

    Anonymous 3 hours ago.
    AMPs bureaucracy makes a public service department look like a kindergarten. The real story from these two days at the RC is that ASIC was so concerned drafting incomprehensible SOAs, and rifling through the ex-Guardian advisers advice files to manufacture the allegations of Report 413, that they had no time to go looking for a fees fiasco in the Big Five. Some of these "fees -for-no advice" came from super accumulation in platforms, denuding the balances, just as it said in 413. Where were Mr Kells 60 employees/investigators - down at the Melbourne club, hob-knobing with all the Big Five execs. I can just hear the gossip at the ASIC tea trolley- "we don't need to check-out what is happening at the Big Five- we can trust them, they will always notify breaches, unlike those sleazy self-employed advisers in smaller AFSLs"
    Anonymous 4 hours ago.
    I've only very recently joined the industry, and the casual admissions/widely known "revelations" that have come to light in these first 2 days are sickening. The 'orphan clients' bobbing around in the 'BOLR pool' are hardworking mums, dads, grandparents etc. all of whom are seeing their retirement funds being diminished & their future jeopardised. They trust advisers and are far too often betrayed - and good God, that is so, so sad.

    To those advisers complaining "we are being unfairly targeted" ... How? If the actions of AMP & their employees/authorised reps (and undoubtedly we'll hear of other organisations' horrendous tactics as the RC progresses) don't justify this Royal Commission, then what will?

    When i first heard of the Royal Commission, I thought to myself "oh hey, that seems a little unfair." But after this.. bring out the gallows & guillotines. What a dark, shameful era.
    Anonymous 4 hours ago.
    Hodge v Reagan
    Anonymous 4 hours ago.
    This is hilarious.
    We can't sack the adviser because he or she simply sold the business back to AMP in good faith.
    The audacity of the regulator to call a senior manager to task on poor behaviour...LOL LOL !!!

    3 days ago
  • Citizens Electoral Council want APRA investigated.

    3 days ago
  • Charles Ponzi created a new topic ' Dear invaders, BYO Petrol' in the forum.
    ARTICLE - AUSTRALIA is in “real trouble” of running out of fuel by the end of next month in the wake of the Syria strikes, according to experts.

    The International Energy Agency mandates that countries hold a stock in reserve “equivalent to 90 days of net imports” but Australia only has 43 days worth of supply, The Australian reports.

    Australia’s energy security is dependent on regional refineries and oil flows from the Middle East with 91 per cent of all our transport fuels imported in this way. But there is no plan B in case of an oil and fuel supply interruption, according to experts.

    Liberal Senator Jim Molan, a former major general in the Australian Army, on Monday told 2GB that “we stand in real trouble and this is a single point of failure for Australia, very similar to what could happen in a cyber situation”.

    He said the government had taken a “business as usual approach” to fuel reserves and that it was now time to “see action”.

    “It happens because for too long we have taken a business as usual approach,” Mr Molan said.

    “It’s like saying we can determine the size and shape of the Australian Defence Force based on commercial factors and making the market decide.

    “The way that we seem to get around this is that we buy credits overseas which ignores the entire problem.

    “Those credits say that if things go wrong we can buy from overseas but hang on our supply lines of communication by ship are likely to be either threatened or because of insurers nothing will come to us at all.”

    According to Mr Molan, Australia has just three weeks’ of motor fuel stocks and an eruption of tension in our region could immobilise civilian and military vehicles.

    “I can’t imagine that armoured vehicles in the forces in the near future are going to work off renewables or off electricity or off whatever,” Mr Molan told Sky News on Monday.

    It would be difficult to keep Australian vehicles going should there be conflict in the Middle East, Korea, or elsewhere in our neighbourhood, he said.

    This will be a prominent problem for the next Chief of the Defence Force Angus Campbell

    Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull yesterday announced General Campbell would take over from the retiring Air Chief Marshal Mark Binskin in June.
    Liberal Senator Jim Molan at Parliament House in Canberra.

    Liberal Senator Jim Molan at Parliament House in Canberra.Source:News Corp Australia

    Mr Molan, whose military career includes serving as Chief of Operations in 2004 at the headquarters of the Multinational Force in Iraq, yesterday outlined the risks he saw.

    He said 60 per cent of the engine fuel used by Asia came from the Gulf.

    “So we see streams of ships coming round from the Gulf, coming across the Indian Ocean, going through the straits through the South China Sea to where it’s refined for us,” he told Sky News.

    “It’s refined in Singapore, yes, but it’s also refined in Japan, in Korea and in China. It then is turned into diesel, aviation fuel and petrol and comes down in ships to Australia’s ports.”

    Earlier this year, Mr Molan said Australia was one of the few places in the world that didn’t have a government-mandated strategic reserve of fuel.

    According to him, if Australia’s current stockpiles of petrol, diesel and aviation fuel ran dry then the military would effectively be grounded in that time.

    Defence Strategy and Capability at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute senior analyst Dr Malcolm Davis backed Mr Molan’s comments, saying Australia’s fuel reserves would last “20 days at best” if supplies were cut off. He said Australia was “one of the few countries in the world that does not take our energy security seriously”.

    “It would be a Mad Max world. Our society and our economy would begin to fall apart very quickly,” Dr Davis told

    “It’s like electricity — everything depends on fuel to make an economy run. It is very serious.

    “We’ve left ourselves in a perilous situation and governments on both sides have been negligent in this regard.

    “Military analysts have been warning consistently for years and they just ignore it.”

    Dr Davis explained most of Australia’s fuel is transported through narrow straits by tanker ships.

    “Instead of investing in refinement facilities here for refining fuel, the government has decided it’s cheaper to do it overseas.”

    One of the key facilities is in Singapore.

    “The price they pay for that in a crisis is that China can interrupt flow to Australia relatively easy and our economy falls apart.

    “It’s very negligent of the government to let this situation happen. It’s even more appalling we’ve been warning both political parties for years about this.”

    Dr Davis warned the US military had become severely depleted since the Bush administration and said China, Iran, North Korea and Russia had become “direct threats”.

    3 days ago


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