ASIC is investigating about “50 individuals”, most of them understood to be financial planners, over their role in the Westpoint fiasco, according to Labor Senator, Nick Sherry.

The regulator told the Senate Estimates committee last Thursday that it has identified 50 individuals involved in the sale and promotion of Westpoint products and is currently investigating their activities, Sherry said. Yesterday the Federal Court in Perth ordered the winding up of Westpoint Corporation after an application by ASIC to wind up the company on grounds of insolvency. Sherry said he would be pressing ASIC to explain further why it didn’t act sooner to halt flows to Westpoint products. He also he has asked the Tax Office to clarify how many self-managed super fund (SMSF) investors placed money in Westpoint projects. Sherry said if a prima facie case of theft or fraud is indicated is eventually brought against Westpoint, SMSF investors may have recourse to compensation under the SIS Act. However, investors who bought Westpoint products outside super structures would not be entitled to such compensation if a charge of theft or fraud is levelled against Westpoint.

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