The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has frozen the assets of collapsed a self-managed superannuation fund (SMSF) provider and restricted the travel of the company's founder and his wife.
ASIC made the moves after receiving Federal Court approval to freeze all assets owned or held by the founder of the Charterhill group of companies, George Nowak, and his wife, Betty Nowak.
The regulator stated that Charterhill provided advice on the establishment of SMFS as well as the rollover of existing superannuation funds into an SMSF, and the sourcing and purchase of investment properties within SMSF vehicles.
ASIC said it was investigating the management and activities of the Charterhill group, and as a result the Federal Court ordered the surrender of the Nowak's passports and restricted their travel out of Australia.
Four companies within the Charterhill Group, which is based in Adelaide, have been placed under external control, with liquidators and external administrators from Heard Phillips appointed to Lending Solutions International Pty Ltd and Nova Real Estate Pty Ltd. Receivers and managers from Pitcher Partners have been appointed to EJ Property Developments Pty Ltd and Financial Wellness Pty Ltd.
Clients and creditors of the four companies have been encouraged by ASIC to contact the external administrators and managers, or to contact the Financial Ombudsman Service in the event they are not satisfied with the resolutions offered.