30/06/2008 - 11:54

ASIC disqualifies South Perth director

30/06/2008 - 11:54

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The Australian Securities and Investment Commission have disqualified South Perth man Richard Trainer from managing corporations for 18 months.

The Australian Securities and Investment Commission have disqualified South Perth man Richard Trainer from managing corporations for 18 months.

Mr Trainer's disqualification follows an ASIC investigation into 10 failed companies including Global Food Services Pty Ltd, Zorro's Restaurants Pty Ltd, Pioneer Village Restaurant Pty Ltd and Vasse River Resort Pty Ltd.

In a statement, ASIC said its investigation found that Mr Trainer had failed to ensure Zorro's Restaurants maintained proper financial records.

"ASIC also found that Mr Trainer allowed many of the companies to enter a complicated structure of inter-company loans and that the companies were financially stressed," ASIC said.

"More specifically, Mr Trainer pooled the companies' finances to pay accounts and in doing so failed to act in the best interest of some of the companies."

Overall ASIC disqualified four directors from managing corporations throughout May including Phillippe Barros from Victoria, Leo Crasti from New South Wales and Tina Merhi of NSW.

All four individuals have the right to appeal to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.

Below is the full ASIC announcement.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) disqualified four directors from managing corporations throughout May 2008. These disqualifications followed the directors' involvement in failed companies.

Mr Phillippe Barros

ASIC disqualified Mr Phillippe Barros, of Keilor, Victoria, from managing corporations for five years. Mr Barros' disqualification followed an ASIC investigation into his role in three failed companies, Atlantica Developments Pty Ltd, A.D.P. Australian Dairy Products (Longwarry) Pty Ltd and Melbourne Coach Terminal Pty Ltd. ASIC found that Mr Barros failed to ensure that the companies kept proper financial records and managed corporations while disqualified. ASIC also found that Mr Barros used his position as a director of Melbourne Coach Terminal Pty Ltd to remove money from the company for his personal use.

Mr Leo Elio Crasti

ASIC disqualified builder Mr Leo Elio Crasti, of West Pennant Hills, New South Wales, from managing corporations for four years. Mr Crasti's disqualification followed an ASIC investigation into his role in five failed companies: Redi-Pile Sales Pty Ltd, Reco-V Engineering Pty Ltd, Redi-Slab Australia Pty Ltd, Aicra Pty Ltd and Redi Slab Pty Ltd. ASIC's investigation found that Mr Crasti failed to prevent Redi-Pile Sales Pty Ltd from incurring debts when it was insolvent and assist the liquidators of Redi-Slab Australia Pty Ltd. ASIC also found that Mr Crasti breached his duties, as a director of Redi-Pile Sales Pty Ltd by making payments to himself in preference of other creditors while the company was insolvent. Mr Crasti also allowed the company to make significant unsecured loans to other companies with no commercial rationale for doing so.

Ms Tina Merhi

ASIC disqualified building contractor, Ms Tina Merhi, of Earlwood, New South Wales, from managing corporations for four years. Ms Merhi's disqualification followed an ASIC investigation into her role in three failed companies: Key Formwork Systems Pty Ltd, Key F Systems Pty Ltd and Kele Project Management (NSW) Pty Ltd. ASIC's investigation found that all three companies failed owing significant amounts by way of statutory debts and that Ms Merhi failed to ensure that Key Formwork Systems Pty Ltd maintained proper financial records. Ms Merhi failed to provide a report as to affairs to the liquidator of Key Formwork Systems Pty Ltd. ASIC also found that Ms Merhi allowed Key Formwork Systems Pty Ltd to incur debts while the company was insolvent and that she breached her duties as a director by allowing the company to enter into contracts to undertake building works which failed to sufficiently cover the costs of carrying out the work.

Mr Richard James Trainer

ASIC disqualified Mr Richard James Trainer, of South Perth, Western Australia, from managing corporations for 18 months. Mr Trainer's disqualification followed an ASIC investigation into his role in ten failed companies: Global Food Services Pty Ltd, Zorro's Restaurants Pty Ltd, Burbridge Property Group Pty Ltd, Mandurah Resorts Pty Ltd, Margaret River Holiday Suites Pty Ltd, Pioneer Village Restaurant Pty Ltd, Summer Moon Enterprises Pty Ltd, Vasse River Resort Pty Ltd, Burbridge Holdings Pty Ltd and Kitchens Direct Pty Ltd. ASIC's investigation found that Mr Trainer failed to ensure that Zorro's Restaurants Pty Ltd maintained proper financial records. ASIC also found that Mr Trainer allowed many of the companies to enter a complicated structure of inter-company loans and that the companies were financially stressed. More specifically, Mr Trainer pooled the companies' finances to pay accounts and in doing so failed to act in the best interest of some of the companies.

All four disqualified individuals have the right to appeal to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal for a review of ASIC's decision.

Assetless Administration Fund

These disqualifications bring the total to 47 for the 07/08 financial year and reflect ASIC's commitment to addressing phoenix activity and removing directors from office who fail to fulfil their responsibilities. ASIC's ability to tackle misconduct was enhanced by the introduction of the Assetless Administration Fund in October 2005, which allows ASIC to fund preliminary investigations by liquidators into failed companies with few or no assets. 'The Assetless Administration Fund has enabled liquidators to properly investigate the affairs of assetless companies and then report to ASIC. Such reports have lead to ASIC taking increased action to disqualify directors who fail to act in the best interests of their companies and whose actions are detrimental to the employees and creditors of those companies,' said ASIC's Acting Executive Director of Consumer Protection, Ms Delia Rickard.

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