“Owing investors approximately $9 million (17-246MR). Many of the investors were pensioners and were approached by telemarketing or word of mouth. Investors were convinced to borrow against their homes and were told that their money would be used to develop property in Tasmania. Instead, the money paid by investors was used to pay back interest owed to other investors, payments to employees, cash withdrawals and transfers to personal bank accounts.”
ASIC has permanently banned Mr Steven William Hill from engaging in credit activities and providing financial services.
An ASIC investigation found that between January 2006 and February 2007, Mr Hill, through Hill Stephens & Associates Pty Ltd and International Finance Consortium (Aust) Pty Ltd induced various investors to pay approximately $618,000 to acquire interests in a 'house and land' property development located in Queensland.
Mr Hill was found guilty of fraudulently misappropriating $281,000 of the invested funds, which were directed to company bank accounts to make payments to Mr Hill and other third parties.
On 18 April 2016, His Honour Acting Judge Garling sentenced Mr Hill to 2 years and 9 months jail for fraudulent misappropriation (refer: 16-118MR).
Following the sentencing, ASIC determined that Mr Hill should be permanently banned as he was convicted of offences involving dishonest and fraudulent conduct.
ASIC Commissioner Peter Kell said Mr Hill's misconduct was very serious.
'ASIC will ban people from the finance industry who act dishonestly and place personal interests ahead of those they service. Mr Hill's actions exposed vulnerable members of the community to financial loss and hardship', Mr Kell said.
Mr Hill has the right to appeal to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal for review of ASIC’s decisions.
ASIC investigations revealed that between January 2006 and February 2007, Mr Hill met with various investors based in New South Wales. Describing himself as a 'financier/consultant', Mr Hill, through his company Hill Stephens & Associates Pty Ltd, told investors he would be able to provide them with investment opportunities to build their wealth towards retirement.
Mr Hill advised investors their funds would be used as 'seed capital' in a number of Queensland based property developments he was facilitating. Mr Hill advised investors that they would receive returns of between 10 - 30% per annum, however, unknown to the investors, funds paid were not invested in the property developments as originally advised by Mr Hill.
In June 2013 Mr Hill was charged with eight counts of fraudulent misappropriation (refer: 13-146MR).
In March 2015 Mr Hill was ordered to stand trial on seven counts of fraudulent misappropriation (refer: 15-050MR).
In March 2016 Mr Hill was convicted on 6 counts of fraudulent misappropriation by a Sydney District Court jury after a four-week trial. (refer: 16-072MR).
Mr Hill was found not guilty of one charge of fraudulently misappropriating $150,000.