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BFCSA Dear Mr Morrison - shame on you: “I have always believed in miracles! How good is Australia and how good are Australians?

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13 July 2019



Prime Minister of Australia

Hon. Scott Morrison MP

Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet

P O Box 6500



Dear Mr Morrison

Re: Sterling New Life’s Disgraceful Collapse and ASIC’s Neglect on Behalf of Australian Consumers

“I have always believed in miracles!  How good is Australia and how good are Australians?  This is the best country in the world in which to live and it’s those Australians we have been working for the last 5 ½ years…..  It has been those Australians who have worked hard every day; they have their dreams, they have their aspirations to get a job, to get an apprenticeship, to start a business, to meet someone amazing, to start a family, to buy a home, to work hard and provide the best you can for your kids!  TO SAVE FOR YOUR RETIREMENT AND TO ENSURE THAT WHEN YOU ARE IN YOUR RETIREMENT THAT YOU CAN ENJOY BECAUSE YOU HAVE WORKED HARD!  THESE ARE THE QUIET AUSTRALIANS WHO HAVE WON A GREAT VICTORY TONIGHT!”

No doubt, Mr Morrison, you recognise these words from your opening election victory speech on 18 May 2019! 

Well, whilst you were making that speech, several hundreds of these hard-working Australian retirees and investment property owners were not aware that they were about to be plummeted into the depths of despair, anxiety and stress and creating the greatest trauma of their lives – THEIR WHOLE LIFE SAVINGS HAD BEEN GOBBLED UP BY THE CRIMINALS WHO SWINDLED THEM OF THEIR LIFE SAVINGS IN THE FORM OF STERLING NEW LIFE AND ITS SUBSIDIARY COMPANIES!

These criminals, who were the directors and sales people of this whole operation are REPEAT OFFENDERS who should have been struck off the Corporate List and jailed (with the key thrown away) years ago.  Their past history goes back to financial collapses in the 1980’s, then re-surfacing again in the 2000’s for the Finance Broker’s Scandal and now yet another collapse in 2019 with Sterling Life and its subsidiary companies.

By now your colleagues, Mr Shipton and Mr Frydenberg, may have briefed you on this diabolical situation, of which my father who is 83 years of age, now finds himself, along with many others.  My father and step-mother were duped into this scheme back in 2017.  My step-mother passed away just six months ago and now my father is not only grieving for his wife but also in a very fragile state of mind because of this situation.

These hard-working Australians, who you mentioned in your speech, have had their life’s savings ripped out from underneath them – ALL WHILST UNDER THE EYE AND, SEEMINGLY THE APPROVAL, OF THE WATCHDOG (Australian Investment and Securities Commission)!  Sterling New Life was endorsed and registered with ASIC!  Were there any back-handers flowing between these two entities?  If not, then where is the due diligence and integrity of ASIC?  Why were these criminals of well-known past history allowed to come back time and again?  Why are there no consequences to these criminals’ actions? 

ASIC was alerted to the improprieties of this company back in 2015 by the Consumer Protection Department here in Western Australia.  This company was still operating well into 2018 and the majority of retirees signed up between 2016 and 2018 – why was ASIC not onto these improprieties and shutting this company down in 2015 or earlier, as it seems they were even aware of these criminals and their MODUS OPERANDI (MO) from well back in the early 2000’s?  THE CORPORATE WATCHDOG has so much to answer for!!  AND THE CORPORATE WATCHDOG MUST BE ACCOUNTABLE FOR IT’S DECISIONS AND LACK OF ACTION!!  Where is the consumer protection in Australia?  It appears to me that it is non-existent and yet it sucks up some $450 million (or more?) each year of the Federal Budget? 

Mr Morrison, if I murdered somebody and was caught, I would be tried and sent to prison for a very long time.  Yet, these criminals in WHITE COLLAR CRIME have, in a manner of speaking, murdered these affected Sterling Life tenants, landlords and investors in such a way that has had major detrimental effects on their health, lives and the ripple effects that flow on to their families who are trying to help pick up the pieces!  A lot of effort is being directed into DRUG CRIME but not, seemingly, into WHITE COLLAR CRIME, of which Australia is the world’s capital, and this would appear to go untouched.  Perhaps the Corporate Watchdog has either no interest in doing their job or simply lazy and asleep at the wheel?  I believe that not only this, ASIC staff get paid generous salaries with even more generous bonuses!!  Plus, it seems, that Treasury hands over some $450 million each year - for doing what, I ask?  Where is the accountability and reportability of ASIC’s under-performance in preventing white collar crime and publicly announcing ALL information relating to white collar criminals who set up these PONZI schemes to rip off and target vulnerable retirees of their life savings, of whom should instead be enjoying the rewards of their years of hard work?  Why is ASIC not proactive in protecting ALL Australian consumers against this white collar crime?

As a practising Christian, Mr Morrison (as are, no doubt, many of these victims), are you capable of putting yourself in these retirees’ shoes and imagine what it must be like to be suffering major, if not terminal, illness knowing that after all your years of hard work it totals to being penniless and reliant on government handouts and an insecurity of whether you have a roof over your head?  The undue anxiety and stress that these people are suffering is unbearable and needs to be relieved IMMEDIATELY!  These people were sold on a promise from Sterling Life that their futures would be rosy and secure, that their money would be invested wisely and pay for rent for up to 40 years, or however long they remained as tenants, and that their investment income would cover any council and water rates plus any maintenance that needed to be done on the property in which they resided.  T

HIS CERTAINLY WAS A TOTAL LIE ON STERLING LIFE GROUP’S PART!  This company’s information prospectus/brochure states that the company was STRONGLY SUPPORTED BY THE GOVERNMENT! 

So, if this company had the backing of government and/or ASIC, as stated, now that the whole thing has collapsed and these directors have disappeared, presumably taking the money with them, leaving people desperate and with no savings, plus to top it off, facing eviction, then it is the government who needs to bail them out!  This is the right and Christian thing to do!  These victims of Sterling Life need IMMEDIATE COMPENSATION for their losses and undue stress as stated further below in this letter.

The Australian Government now needs to STEP UP TO THE CHALLENGE of changing legislation so that WHITE COLLAR CRIME is wiped out completely, that retirees can live, as you state, “enjoying the rewards of their hard work” and criminals who engage in this sort of activity are brought to justice – THERE SHOULD BE A CONSEQUENCE TO ENGAGING IN SUCH BEHAVIOUR!

We will stand up and fight for the following:

a.       A Royal Commission into ASIC – to expose any corruption, clean-out of under-performing staff, and implement Key Performance strategies to make ASIC accountable for ALL of its decisions and actions.

b.       A “Dunn and Bradstreet” credit-type check system whereby every company and its directors being registered with ASIC is scrutinised, police checked and whatever other checks need to be applied, and are 100% compliant before being approved for registration; and then, once registered, stringent and regular monitoring of that company’s practices to ensure they comply with the law. 

c.       If found to be failing this legal monitoring then that company to be shut down completely IMMEDIATELY.

d.       Any director, or head staff of this company or whatever position, be subject to the legal repercussions and personally liable and responsible for the refund of any monies owing to affected clients, creditors, etc.

e.       Company Trust Funds to be set up with the strictest of conditions so that these criminals are not able to run away with people’s savings and investments and live the ‘life of Riley’ on this stolen money, as is happening as I write this letter.

On behalf of all affected victims of this diabolical crime, including my father, I am now asking you, as a committed Christian, Mr Morrison, to take compassion and action on the following as a priority:

a.   That all affected victims of the Sterling New Life fiasco be refunded the full amount of their investment from the some $450 million-odd that is passed into ASIC’s coffers each year! 

b.   Not only should they receive the full refund, but a compensation added to this amount for undue anxiety and stress - all caused because of ASIC’s lack of due diligence and protecting the Australian consumer!

c.    Extra compensation for ongoing medical treatment and care, and any other applicable costs that are directly related to this unbearably stressful situation (I believe that a few of these people are critically ill with not much time left).  These retired Australians are entitled to (and I quote) “enjoy the rest of their retirement because they have worked hard for this!”

d.   To compensate any person who has put in extra personal savings into making improvements to the property which they DO NOT own, and which they may be evicted from, because they thought this would be their secure place of residence for their time left!

The above is only a fair and reasonable request!

On behalf of my father, and all retirees who have lost their savings, I expect IMMEDIATE ATTENTION AND ACTION to resolve this and hand back to these hard‑working retirees’ full amounts owing to them plus compensation so they can get on with their lives and “ENJOY” what time they have left.  Property owners also need to be compensated for their loss of earnings, being that they were sold a TOTAL LIE also!

LET’S STAMP OUT WHITE COLLAR CRIME AND SCAMS AND SEEK JUSTICE TO WHITE COLLAR AND SCAM CRIMINALS so that all hard-working Australians can live their retirement years in peace, free from the worry that they could lose the money they have saved for this!

The government needs to MAKE ASIC ACCOUNTABLE and put in place legislation that ensures THE CORPORATE WATCHDOG becomes JUST THAT - proactive in protecting consumers from these diabolical crimes in the future!

I look forward to receiving your reply about how this will be resolved by ASIC and the government.  This is URGENT AND CRITICAL and requires swift resolution.  Swift compensation for my father would alleviate the undue stress that he is currently experiencing and would allow him to make alternative choices as to his future, now that his circumstances are very different to what they were 12-18 months ago when he and my step-mother were first duped into this situation.

Yours sincerely


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