Former Sydney planner sentenced to six years

ASIC Ross Hopkins danielle press

26 May 2021
| By Oksana Patron |
expand image

Killara financial planner and the sole director of QWL, Ross Hopkins, has been sentenced by the District Court of New South Wales to a maximum period of six years’ imprisonment after having been convicted of 15 dishonesty offences under the Corporations Act

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) found that Hopkins, who managed his clients self-managed superannuation fund (SMSF) accounts and had almost complete control of his clients’ superannuation which allowed him to transact on their accounts, misappropriated approximately $2.9 million of his clients’ funds without their knowledge between 14 October, 2016, and 8 October, 2019. 

According to ASIC, Hopkins also used his clients’ funds for his own benefit, such as holidays, rent, paying his own credit card debt and repaying personal loans. 

“Financial advisers should always allow clients to have direct access to information about their own investments. If this is not occurring, clients should contact ASIC with their concerns,” ASIC commissioner, Danielle Press said. 

“Mr Hopkins lied to his clients, and the Court’s decision demonstrates the seriousness of this conduct. Financial advisers must be open and honest with their clients and if they aren’t, they face serious consequences.” 

QWL, which held an Australian financial services licence (AFSL) since 1 January, 2004, provided QWL clients with financial advice including dealing in securities and advising on SMSFs. 

ASIC’s investigation into Hopkins and QWL commenced in 2019 in response to allegations that QWL had failed to assist the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) in resolving client complaints. 

Read more about:


Recommended for you

sub-bgsidebar subscription

Never miss the latest news and developments in wealth management industry


Peter Johnson

As others have said - plenty of excuses for further falls. How about decades of being continually beaten down by the...

47 minutes 14 seconds ago
Duke Nukem

Finally someone with the guts to ask the hard questions of the corrupt body that governs us. Good on you Angry, ASIC mak...

2 hours ago

Planners will be in short supply, with only 376 in FY23–24. In my experience, of this number, only around 20% to 30% wi...

23 hours 1 minute ago

Insignia Financial has unveiled a new operating model and executive team, including a new head of advice, while three senior executives are set to depart the licensee....

1 week 6 days ago

ASIC has secured travel restraint orders against a financial adviser while he is the subject of an investigation into alleged financial misconduct....

1 day 18 hours ago

The $280 billion Australian Retirement Trust is the first superannuation fund off the block to report its performance for the 2023-24 financial year....

3 weeks 2 days ago


Fund name
Ardea Diversified Bond F
144.00 3 y p.a(%)
Hills International
63.39 3 y p.a(%)