The Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) has announced that former managing director of Global Merces Funds Management (in liquidation), Holly Marie Grofski, will face criminal charges.
According to the regulator, the managing director of Global Merces, before it was wound up following a Federal Court decision and ASIC investigation, has been charged with:
- One count of dishonestly or recklessly failing to exercise her powers and discharge her duties (section 184(1) of the Corporations Act. Maximum sentence of imprisonment of 15 years);
- One count of providing false information to the auditors of Global Merces (section 1309(1) and s1311(1) of the Corporations Act. Maximum sentence of imprisonment of five years);
- One count of engaging in conduct resulting in the falsification of books regarding the affairs of Global Merces (section 1307(1) and s1311(1) of the Corporations Act. Maximum sentence of imprisonment of five years).
ASIC said that all the alleged offending occurred in November 2019 and Grofski was released on bail and the matter adjourned to 16 July 2021 before the Brisbane Magistrates court for further mention.
Also, ASIC suspended the Australian financial service (AFS) licence of Global Merces for a period of six months on 21 January 2020.
On 31 January 2020, following an application by ASIC, the Federal Court ordered Global Merces be wound up on just and equitable ground and on 20 July 2020, ASIC cancelled the AFS licence of Global Merces.