16/06/2017 - 11:15

Watchdog bans another Perth adviser

16/06/2017 - 11:15

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The corporate watchdog has removed another Perth-based financial adviser from the industry, for mishandling payments and deceiving clients.

Watchdog bans another Perth adviser
Robert Hutchison was an authorised representative of RI Advice Group – a division of OnePath which is a subsidiary of ANZ.

The corporate watchdog has removed another Perth-based financial adviser from the industry, for mishandling payments and deceiving clients.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission said it had permanently banned WAWM Investment Holdings director Robert Hutchison from providing financial services for dishonest conduct.

Mr Hutchinson was an authorised representative of RI Advice Group – a division of OnePath, which is a subsidiary of ANZ Banking Group – between 2007 and 2012.

The watchdog found that, between 2011 and 2012, Mr Hutchison banked cheques he had received from his clients for advice fees directly into his personal bank account, when he was supposed to remit or report them to RI Advice.

“Mr Hutchison then deducted additional fees from his clients’ investment platform of financial product for payment to RI Advice,” Asic said.

Mr Hutchison also failed to record the receipt of the cheques on RI Advice’s payment system, Asic found.

“Mr Hutchison misled or deceived his clients by failing to disclose to them that they had been double charged advice fees and failed to comply with the proper process for remitting and reporting the fees,” the commission said.

“He also misled or deceived RI Advice by failing to disclose that he had deposited the advice fees into his own account and did not comply with RI Advice’s relevant fees policies and procedures.”

Asic deputy chairman Peter Kell said the commission would continue to protect consumers by removing people from the financial services industry who acted dishonestly and breached the trust of their clients.

The news came a week after Asic banned a former Westpac employee from providing financial services after finding he mishandled more than $1 million worth of advice service obligations.

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