Gregory Clements and Neil Charles Manning have appeared in the Perth Magistrates Court on criminal charges brought by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission over investments totalling around $1.5 million. ASIC alleges Messrs Clements and Manning knowingly provided financial advice on behalf of a company incorporated in Labuan, Malaysia, EC Trust Co, without holding an Australian financial services licence. An ASIC investigation found that at least 17 investors from Western Australia had made 'debenture' investments in or through EC Trust Co to the approximate value of $1.5 million with claimed returns exceeding 50 per cent and a minimum guaranteed return of nine per cent. Mr Clements and Mr Manning have been remanded on bail to reappear in the Perth Magistrates Court on June 9 2006. The Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions is prosecuting the matter. Mr Clements had previously been an authorised representative of National Australia Bank Ltd from October 1998 to January 2003 and operated as a financial planner and adviser. During the period from 2002-03, ASIC alleges that Mr Clements provided financial advice for EC Trust Co, which was not associated with his employment as a financial planner and adviser at NAB, nor was it an investment fund authorised by NAB. Mr Clements is no longer employed by NAB. ASIC permanently banned both men from providing financial services in May 2004.
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