This is a shocking story of how the assets of the hard working Byers family were stripped from them in a STING by both Westpac and their receiver managers. This is a story that needs to be told of how the banking industry was allowed to perpetrate this fraud. We have seen this asset stripping time and time again and it still goes on today, even after the Royal commission. Terry has written these factual events in the hope of getting the Financial Ombudsman Service to produce a positive determination. This was not the case as (FOS) gave a ridiculous determination, that it was actually Terry that put the receivers into the properties and not Westpac. This document proves without a doubt (FOS) to be wrong. Terry is very determined to fight this injustice to the end. The team at Bank Victims wish Terry well in his endevours for justice.
Complaint about Westpac; Insolvency Turnaround Solutions (ITS) and Julie Williams as Receiver Manager of my affairs. Please find the below information as requested, providing a brief outline of the past 14 years including the period that Julie Williams (ITS) requested me to manage the hotel motel up until 10th January 2014.
Kate & Terry Byers purchased the Woodgate Beach Hotel Motel, for $500k. Money was borrowed from the Westpac at Wollongong.
I spent $150k on the Pokie room and front deck. Money was borrowed from Westpac at Bundaberg.
Purchased 197 Esplanade at Woodgate Beach for $225K, purchased by Kate and Terry Byers, money borrowed from Westpac Bundaberg.
July 2003 – 2004
Spent $350k on new cool rooms, offices, TAB. Money borrowed from Westpac Bundaberg.
Purchased 194 Esplanade at Woodgate Beach, by Terry and Kate Byers for $300k, money borrowed from Westpac Bundaberg
I spent $60k on smokers, deck and umbrellas
Kate and Terry Byers borrowed another $700k from Westpac to purchase 198 Esplanade Woodgate Beach
I spent approx. $2m buying the hotel and all the improvements over the 7yrs.
Started working on D.A for 19 units across the front of the hotel and houses.
I (Terry Byers) borrowed $700k (from Westpac Bundaberg) to pay out Ex Wife for property settlement and also gave her our $2m house along with car and furniture, in property settlement
2009 Down turn in economy (GFC)
2011 Floods in Bundaberg
I had the D.A approval for the 19 units approved across the front of the hotel and houses, which cost me approx. $350k.
2013 Floods in Bundaberg: - pub had $66,000.00 in storm damage, 4 months to repair damage. Kitchen closed and pokie machine room closed. (4 months) due to floods
On or about June-July 2013: - Westpac phoned and said I was in default by not paying $50k off my overdraft and I was 4 months behind in my payments.
On or about 18th August 2013 I received a letter from Westpac dated 16th August from Mr. Henry Gu Relationship manager (RLVG). Due to the content I have attached a copy of this letter. (Not attached, only hard copy, have to bring with me)
In July-August, Julie Williams receiver-manager, (Insolvency Turnaround Solutions (ITS) – Westpac appointed her), turned up at the hotel; she said she was sent by Westpac to see what was happening with the town and my situation. Not much was happening. She said we should put on a trivia night. She arrived at 10.30am and left again at approx. 3pm. I was charged $5500 by Westpac for her coming to see me- she had said that it would be added to my debt.
The reason that the hotel motel was dead was due to the fact we had the big floods and storms. The poker machine room was damaged and the kitchen was damaged and the rooms were not trading due to the flooding. I was insured with AON. However, I was waiting for the assessor and trades peoples to assess and start repairing the damage. It took approx. 4 months to repair the damage to the hotel including the kitchen and Pokie machine room.
On Julie Williams’s initial visit in or about July August 2013, I advised her I was putting the hotel motel together with the 2 houses and vacant block of land to auction. These property amalgamations had Bundaberg Regional Councils Development Approval (DA) for 19 -- 3 bedroom / 2 bathrooms units, including 3 car spaces for each unit, across the front of the 4 properties.
I had arranged for local real estate agent, Grahame White of Asian Pacific Realty/ Woodgate Beach Pacific Realty, to conduct this auction. This auction was planned to take place after the federal election in November 2013 on Saturday 16th November 2013. I started to organize the advertising for the auction, with Graham White who I had engaged, of Woodgate Beach Pacific Realty.
Grahame Whites contact number is 0427669206.
I had instructed my solicitor Curt Schatz, of Mullens Solicitors, Brisbane, to draw up the auction sale contracts.
It was estimated that the pre-auction advertising would be in the vicinity of $20,000.00. I had $10k in my bank account. My brother lent me the further $10,000.00.
Westpac Bank then froze my $10,000 in my Terrence E. Byers Trading as Woodgate Beach Hotel Motel Poker machine account. The money is still frozen in this account.
The $10,000 I had borrowed from my brother I had earlier provided to the Real estate agent to pay towards the advertising we had booked with the newspaper advertisers.
On 10th October 2013, Julie Williams (ITS) turned up at about 11.00am and served me with foreclosure papers.
She advised me she had been appointed by Westpac as Receiver Manager of my Hotel Motel trading business affairs. She then had all bank accounts regarding day to day trading frozen.
The accounts are as follows: -
Max, I Direct Account – T.E. Byers—BSB 034 122 Acct # 395616. ITS paid my management salary into this account.
Westpac Business Overdraft Acct.
BSB 034 122 Acct # 407963 Mr. Terence E. Byers t/as Woodgate beach Hotel Motel.
Terence E. Byers t/as Woodgate Beach Hotel Motel Poker Machine Account
BSB. 034122 Acct #. 407971
Westpac MasterCard A/c #. 5163 2010 8055 2397, Customer #. 04982798 – T.E. Byers Acct. Limit $6,500.00.
Julie Williams then proceeded to phone all of my trade suppliers with whom I had monthly trading accounts. She advised them by phone and I veritably believe she followed up with written notification that the outstanding accounts as at the date of her (ITS) appointment that ITS, as Receiver Manager, would only be responsible for purchases from that date (10Th October 2013). She advised them that I was still responsible for any outstandin accounts prior to her appointment.
Julie Williams then asked if I would be agreeable to keep running the hotel / motel as Manager for and on behalf of ITS. I agreed. However, I stated that I would only do it for 3 months. Julie Williams then agreed to pay me $1,000.00 per week plus superannuation and also reimburse me for any repairs that were necessary for the safe operation of this establishment and associated equipment. There was no formal letter of my appointment, from ITS, as manager of the business for the Receiver Manager. I managed the Hotel motel until the 10th January 2014. No stock take was ever undertaken on the day of ITS’ appointment or near after this date, of Julie Williams appointment, as Receiver Manager.
Further to this, no stock take was again undertaken when their new manager arrived to take over on the 10th January 2014. I believe that the Receiver Manager had not put in any systems to keep check and control of both stock and monies. Julie Williams had no control of the business including stock and cash controls.
This is immediately transparent after reading my statements that follow below.
On the day of ITS’ appointment I again advised Julie Williams I was still going ahead with the Hotel Motel auction as previous mentioned herein.
I told Julie, that I had paid Woodgate Beach Pacific Realty $10,000 to start the initial advertising for the auction sale of all these properties. Julie Williams initially told me she was going to advise the Real Estate agent that she was putting a stop to this auction.
I then advised her that I had paid the real estate agent $10,000 towards the advertising costs of the then booked space for these advertisements. Also, I advised her I would prefer to keep with the advertising program. Shethen agreed, to let me go ahead, after she learnt I had paid $10,000 towards these costs.
A few days later, Julie Williams rang Grahame White and made changes to the booked advertisements. She requested of Graham White that all advertising to now show that Receiver Managers had been appointed. The first advertisements were placed, without reference to a Receiver Manager had been appointed, in various real estate web sites and also, the Financial Review, The Australian, Brisbane Courier Mail, the Coalfields Express, Fraser Coast Chronicle and Bundaberg News Mail, went ahead without the any reference that a Receiver Manager had been appointed. The rest of the advertisements advertised a Receiver Manager had been appointed. Julie Williams then told me she would have the bank’s solicitor draw up the proposed Contract of Sale with any special clauses that they required. I then advised Curt Schatz of Mullens Solicitors of these events. Mullens then provided me with a bill of $880.00 for their services up to that date.
The auction was on held on site. Before the auction, Julie Williams was present. She proceeded to show me a piece of paper with her reserve prices for; 1) the four (4) properties as one sale being $4million. 2), the hotel / motel and residue land behind being $2.5 million. Julie then advised me she was going to give this piece of paper (reserve prices) to the Auctioneer, a Mr. Mike Eastburn of 36 Mulgrave Street Bundaberg, (his contact
phone number as at date of this letter, has been disconnected. No contact could be made). The whole of the properties with the DA approval was put up. There were no bids received.
The two-story solid brick and block house at 194 the Esplanade was then put to auction. There were no bids for this property. The next property,197 Esplanade was put up. Again, no bids. Then 198 Esplanade, a 3 bedroomhouse was put up. Again, no bids.
The hotel motel was then put up. An opening bid of $2, 000,000.00 was received a competing bid of $2,050,000.00 was received. The Receiver Manager had earlier instructed the auctioneer of her reserve prices. Therefore, the hotel / Motel was also passed in. However, from talking with the Agent, Grahame White, on the day he advised me that immediately after the hotel was passed in this bidder (at $2,050,000) had then offered $2.8 million for the hotel motel together with the 2-story house at 194 the Esplanade. Graham White advised me that Julie Williams advised him that she wasn’t prepared to accept this offer as she wanted $3million or better for these two properties.
I don’t know what eventuated between the Real estate agent and the Receiver Manager after that day to enable to gain a satisfactory sale for both myself and the bank.
What has puzzled me that neither Westpac bank nor the Receiver Manager engaged a proficient valuer to value the properties, to be valued as a forced sale, before the auction took place?
Peter Power of Power Jefferies had visited the hotel on or about August September. He dropped in as a courteous call and had a few beers with me. He had stated that the hotel should and would sell for at least $2.2 million. He had known of the original builder and Peter Power had, as a hotel / hospitality industry valuer, gave his opinion as to the initial business plan and projected cash flows for the next 10 years, after opening.
From the 10th of October 2013 until the 10th January 2014, I took approximately $30k out of the bottle shop takings, to pay all my creditors that I owed money to, prior to receivership. After the 10th January 2014 and my term of managing the hotel for the Receiver managers, there was not a single person or business that I owed money to except Westpac. Julie Williams as Receiver Manager was not aware of my actions of what I had done.
I felt Julie Williams and ITS were incompetent Receiver Managers with no professional acumen for the day to day operations of a liquor and hospitality property.
I managed the hotel until the 10th January 2014; still, no stock take had taken place. Julie Williams appointed a new manager named Peter, he managed the hotel for approximately 10 weeks and still no stock take was carried out. Julie Williams sacked him at my instigation.
In June- July- August I was in Darwin working with my brother. My previous hotel assistant- manager, who was still employed at the hotel by the Receiver Manager, phoned me towards the end of July 2014 advising that the hotel was being advertised by Power Jefferies and Co. This auction was to take place on site on 9th August 2014.
I immediately prepared to drive back to Woodgate to be present for this auction.
Peter Power was the auctioneer and put the hotel to the public. Peter Power started the bidding process by an opening bid, on behalf of the Receiver manager (ITS) for $1.5 million. There were no subsequent bids.
Julie Williams was also present at this auction. Julie Williams refused to talk with me at this auction.
Peter Power had told me, after the auction, that there was a lot of interest shown in the hotel motel and that he had to make a sale happen.
October 2014: - I received a letter from Julie saying that I had 10 days to pack and leave my home. I asked could I please have an extension of 1 month because I was working in Darwin and she said yes.
Between October 2014 and January 2015, I rang Julie Williams a number of times, to ask if she could at least sell my homes and land, she said that it had nothing to do with me.
It has now been 2 years since the first auction was held. The houses and vacant land have not been put to the market by way of; either through local Real Estate Agents listings, tender processes or whatever in order to gain a sale. Also, in order that I am not incurring ongoing default interest charges against my Secured Mortgages.
On or about 11th January 2015, I received mail, from Westpac’s Tier Three attorney, a Stewart Anthony Meager. This mail was addressed to both myself and the Receiver Manager.
It stated in part that unless, within 31 days after receipt of this letter, I had not remedied by payment of the Amount payable shown for each account in the Second Schedule, the bank may proceed to sell the land the subject of the Securities and exercise all powers or any powers conferred by the Securities or the Property Law Act 1974 (Qld.).
How was I able to fund the default notices when I had no control to be able to sell any of the properties.
Insolvency Turnaround Solutions _ Julie Williams shown and documented incompetence to manage the hotel both for Westpac as Mortgagee in Possession and also myself who has been placed in Receivership of which ITS now have control of my business affairs.
- I managed the hotel from 13th October 2013 until 10th January 2014. During this period, I was advised to use my credit and possible debit card (Woodgate Beach Hotel Motel (WBHM) Overdraft account)
- I purchased all stock and hotel supplies from my previous suppliers using these cards. Julie Williams would then top up these accounts, I believe, from the WBHM Overdraft account. My personal credit card (T. E. Byers acct # 5163 2010 8055 2397) would be topped up to the $6,500.00 available credit line. The other account in the name of Woodgate Beach Hotel Motel Terence E. Byers (acct# 1293 1830 0032 3065) would be topped up to a $5000.only
- These top-ups of the accounts were done weekly.
- The use of my personal credit cards was requested by Julie Williams.
- After my term as manager (13/10/13 to 10/01/14)
- I lived at my residence at 194 The Esplanade.
- During this time, I had been using my credit card to live on.
- I was not aware, until May 2014, that ITS had topped up the transaction Credit card ?/ debit card ? attached to the WBHM – Terence E. Byers Overdraft account.
- In May 2014 I planned to drive to Darwin in my 2 tonne light truck. However, my truck blew up some 250 klms from Woodgate. I had the truck recovered to the residence at 194 the Esplanade. I proceeded to repair the damage to the engine. However, my personal credit card was at its credit limit.
- I then tried my other card attached to the WBHM – Terence E. Byers Overdraft account.
- I was amazed to see I had $5,000 available credit.
- I paid the recovery firm $1,000 from this account. I then paid $4,000 for the necessary engine parts. I had emptied this account.
- At the end of May 2014, I had been advised by an employee of the hotel that she had seen my accounts details and that this O/draft account had been topped up to the $5,000 limit at the beginning of the month, as previously arranged by Julie Williams in October 2013.
- I did not think anything about this, only that I had $5000 in my account I could use.
- This account was again topped up to $5,000 on 1st June 2014. I had to purchase further truck parts in June 2014. I again used this card for that payment (approx. $2,000).
- After repairing my truck, in June, I drove to Darwin for work as I had a job there.
- I travelled to Darwin using this card for both fuel and living expenses.
- Again, this account was topped up on 1st July 2014 - $5,000.
- I returned to Woodgate to attend Power Jefferies & Co. auction of the Hotel Motel on 9th August 2014. I used this card to fund my travel and living expenses from Darwin to Woodgate.
- By letter dated 14th October I was advised by Julie Williams I had to vacate my residence (194 Esplanade) by 30th Oct 2014. I requested of the Receiver manager if I could extend this by 1 month. Julie Williams agreed.
- Nothing was brought up at this time when speaking with Julie Williams about my WBHM Overdraft account still being reimbursed $5000 each month, after I had used the previously available funds in the preceding month.
- I relocated myself to Bowen to rebuild myself. I initially started a trucking /storage business to take advantage of the then proposed Adani Coal project based at Abbot Point 15 klms north of Bowen.
- On the 28th November 2014 I paid the furniture removalist, Dusty Removals $3,000 to remove my furniture from Woodgate Beach to Bowen. I paid this account from my WBHM – Terence E. Byers O/draft acct.
- I undertook to take a short-term lease of a large shed and house at 17 Collinsville road Bowen.
- I had to engage a local solicitor to draw up this shed lease document. He also had to apply to the Whitsunday Regional Council for a material change of use for the shed.
- These solicitors’ costs were $12,000.
- I paid him $7,000 from my CBus super and further payments of $1,500 on 5th December 2014; $2,800 on the 5th January 2015 and a further $2,789 on the 29th January 2015 from the WBHM –Terence E. Byers Overdraft acct debit? / credit card. This last payment was initially declined by the epos machine at the solicitor’s office.
- I immediately went to the Bowen branch of Westpac where the manager told me that my card was frozen because of an enquiry regarding fraudulent use and would be closed for 15 days. She advised me if the account was cleared for use after these 15 days she would advise me. After 15 days this manager rang to ask me to come to the bank and try my card again. It had been cleared and I was able to withdraw the $2,789 owing to the solicitor.
- The next time I went to use this card it was again declined.
- NEVER at any time during the above-mentioned period of the use of this card did either Julie Williams or Westpac staff contact me regarding any fraudulent use of the card.
- On or about late February / early March 2015, I phoned Julie Williams to ask when they were going to put my properties for sale on the open market. She told me it had nothing to do with me.
- In Julie William’s next breath, she said that I had been using my credit card fraudulently.
- I immediately replied to her that I had not been using it fraudulently I was using my card that was in my name Terence E. Byers and Woodgate Beach Hotel Motel.
- In fact, since the appointment of ITS/ Julie Williams appointment as Receiver Manager from 13th October 2013, Julie Williams or staff from ITS had reimbursed these accounts I had used as previously mentioned herein. Initially the accounts, the cards were attached to, were reimbursed on a weekly basis.
- I don’t know whoever was instructed by Julie Williams to reimburse the expenditure of these cards and topped back up to agreed limits. Much like an Impress Account.
I am not in possession of bank statements for all of these transactions. I believe that these statements may be retained by Insolvency Turnaround Solutions.
I am endeavoring to access copies of these statements through the Bowen branch of Westpac.
Duty of Care
I believe that both Julie Williams and ITS together with Westpac have a Duty of Care to me.
Julie Williams has never shown any Duty of Care towards me.
In the middle of June 2015, I got a phone call from Peter Powers of Powers Jeffery’s & Co (Hotel Brokers) and he told me that the Hotel Motel had been sold for $1.4m. He had requested from me all the engineering building drawings of the Hotel Motel.
It has been almost 2 years since the receivers took over my properties and not one attempt to sell my houses and land. To date, there has not been one sign placed on these properties advertising them for Sale.
In fact, Grahame White the original real estate agent has recently told me that Julie Williams has sent out expressions of interest to many real estate agents to get the best deal for her in marketing these properties. Grahame White advised me that no Real Estate Agents she had earlier approached had been given an appointment to act as her Agent for the marketing and sale of all of my properties.
After Peter Powers had rung me to advise me he had sold the hotel motel for $1.4 million. I immediately phoned Mullens & Mullens (Kurt Schutz) to act on my behalf in this matter. He advised me that he could not, as Westpac is a big client of theirs and it would be a conflict of interest.
I have a strong case against both Westpac, for employing an incompetent Receiver Manager and against ITS, in particular Julie Williams, due to the incompetence she and ITS staff has shown she is not capable of any Stock or money controls and would not know what Gross profit margins had been obtained or profits made by the hotel that should be paid against my bank accounts attached to the hotel trading business.
I strongly believe that these corrupt actions by Westpac and the receivers have now cost me a loss in excess of $6 million dollars. Their corrupt actions have left me penniless and have caused me to have a severe state of depression. In late 2015, I rented a house at Collinsville Rd, Bowen, QLD 4805. I was so depressed that I could not hold down a permanent job. I had no money to my name and I considered committing suicide. My mental state was deteriorating and I told Kate I was considering revenge in some way against Westpac and Julie Williams.
Kate said you don’t need to spend the rest of your life in jail, so I got casual work anywhere I could to survive. Everyone I spoke to about help including Solicitors was fruitless, I just ran into a brick wall.
I sent $15,000 to Slater & Gordon. They said I would need about $450,000 to take on Westpac. Money, I did not have.
I rang Mullens Solicitors, they asked me to send $2,000 and they would look at my letter. They said it would cost me a lot of money to take on Westpac and Julie Williams ITS.
I received a tax bill from the government for $10,000 for pay as you go, for the Woodgate Beach Hotel.
(WGBH). I paid this off over 12 months.
There is no other debt that I owe but Westpac. They now claim that I still them some $409,000.00.
Kate my ex-wife bought 17 Collinsville Rd, Bowen, in April 2017 to give me somewhere to live. I pay Kate, $250.00 per week rent. I am on a pension now of $1,000 dollars per fortnight.
I have been informed that the (hotel broker) is good friends with the people who bought my Hotel. They own Hotels at Hervey Bay, Gladstone, Proserpine and now Woodgate Beach. My understanding is that the new owners also bank with Westpac.
A valuation by Bergess Rawson (Hotel Valuers) valued the Hotel at $3.5 million.
Westpac and ITS sold my Hotel Property for $1.4 million. This equates to 40cents in the dollar.
I request this criminal action to be investigated by FOS.
17 Collinsville Road
Bowen Qld, 4805
Mobile No: 0417 663 930
15 July 2018