Federal Court bans property spruiker

Two notorious property industry identities have been “disqualified from managing corporations and restrained from carrying on financial services for a period of 10 years”.

The Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC) announced the Federal Court has declared land banking developments operated by Jamie and Dennis McIntyre were “unregistered managed investment schemes” and delivered the ban “due to them being officers of companies that had failed, by virtue of them being wound up, and which had also repeatedly contravened the Corporations Act”.

Jamie and Dennis McIntyre agreed to the banning orders made against them.

In addition, the court made orders to wind up the unregistered managed investment schemes, which were promoted and advertised by the 21st Century land banking companies.

The unregistered managed investment schemes are known as:
• Botanica, located at 805 Archer Rd, Kialla, Victoria 3631
• Secret Valley Estate, located at 955, Old Sydney Road, Bylands, Victoria 3762
• Oak Valley Lakes Estate & Resort, located at 124 Booth Road, Brookhill, Townsville, Qld 4816
• Bendigo Vineyard Estate & Resort, located at 51 Andrews Road, Bendigo, Victoria 3551
• Melbourne Grove Estate, located at 1491 Dohertys Road, Mount Cottrell, Victoria 3024

Simon Wallace-Smith and Robert Woods of Deloitte have been appointed as joint liquidators of the unregistered managed investment schemes.

ASIC Commissioner Greg Tanzer said: "The high banning periods ordered by the court in this case are necessary to protect the public from those who are officers of companies that repeatedly contravene the Corporations Act. It also serves as a warning to those involved in unlawful unregistered managed investment schemes, including those that involve land banking, that ASIC will take action."

ASIC's investigation into the matter is ongoing.

Despite agreeing to the bans in the Federal Court last week, a website called Response to ASIC Allegations (www.responsetoasicallegations.com.au) remains live, featuring numerous articles that reject ASIC’s claims.

One such article from 24 February, hosted on Australian National Review, says Jamie McIntyre will "launch a $6.8 million land banking compensation fund to cover investor losses caused by ASIC’s deceptive actions, whilst requesting the government for compensation".

The article says Mr McIntyre "alleges that ASIC took deliberate, premeditated actions to sabotage and cause unnecessary losses to investors".

Mr McIntyre is quoted as saying: "It’s grossly unfair what ASIC has deliberately and unnecessarily done to investors simply to serve a spiteful, politically-motivated vendetta against myself and my companies.

"Some investors’ financial lives have been destroyed because of what ASIC did. I am appalled that such behaviour occurs in Australia. ASIC never needed to do what they did, and have zero justification for doing so.

"Not only are property options perfectly legal, but anyone with half a brain knows that land assets will rise substantially over time regardless of whether or not they get rezoning approvals. Therefore, investors win, which will be evidenced over time as they continue to rise and highlight just how wrong ASIC is."

[Related: ASIC muscles in on property investment schemes]

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