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15-214MR ASIC acts against 21st Century Group and Jamie McIntyre land banking schemes
ASIC has commenced proceedings in the Federal Court of Australia against companies associated with Jamie McIntyre and the 21st Century Group in relation to their promotion and sale of interests to investors in five land banking schemes.
ASIC alleges that the schemes are unregistered managed investment schemes and that the 21st Century Group companies and Mr McIntyre have been unlawfully carrying on an unlicensed financial services business.
The five schemes are promoted and advertised as:
- Botanica, located at 805 Archer Rd, Kialla, Victoria 3631
- Secret Valley Estate, located at 955, Old Sydney Road, Bylands, Victoria 3762
- Oak Valley Lakes Estate & Resort, located at 124 Booth Road, Brookhill, Townsville, Qld 4816.
- Bendigo Vineyard Estate & Resort, located at 51 Andrews Road, Bendigo, Victoria 3551
- Melbourne Grove Estate, located at 1491 Dohertys Road, Mount Cottrell, Victoria 3024
ASIC understands that there are over 100 investors in the schemes, which have been promoted to investors, including through seminars, by entities associated with Mr McIntyre's 21st Century Group. Companies associated with Mr McIntyre and the 21st Century Group are also the developers of the schemes (development companies).
ASIC is seeking orders to appoint a provisional liquidator or receiver and manager to each of the five schemes and the development companies in order to take control of any assets and protect the interests of investors.
The development companies are:
- Archery Road Pty Ltd (ACN 162 921 735)
- Bendigo Vineyard Estate Pty Ltd (ACN 600 088 211)
- Secret Valley Estate Pty Ltd (ACN 602 817 532)
- Kingsway South Holdings Pty Ltd (ACN 159 230 976)
- Melbourne Tarniet Estate Pty Ltd (ACN 603 945 393)
ASIC is also taking action against the development companies and the following for being involved in an unlicensed financial services business.
- Mr Jamie Neville McIntyre (Surfers Paradise Qld)
- Mr Dennis McIntyre (Surfers Paradise Qld)
- Property Tuition Pty Ltd (ACN 129 421 281)
- Education Holdings Pty Ltd (ACN 129 551 917)
- Sourcing Property Pty Ltd (ACN 602 474 779)
ASIC is also seeking orders that each of the defendants, including Mr McIntyre, be restrained from promoting, further promoting or operating any of the schemes and from operating a financial services business.
ASIC’s proceedings are part of ASIC's wider and ongoing investigation into land banking schemes.
ASIC this week settled proceedings commenced against Midland HWY, which was the developer of a land banking scheme known as, 'Hermitage Bendigo' (formerly, 'Acacia Banks') located outside of Bendigo in Victoria (refer: 15-203MR). The 21st Century Group also promoted this development.
Land banking is a real estate investment scheme involving the acquisition of large blocks of land by a promoter or developer of the scheme, often in undeveloped rural areas, who then offer portions of the land to investors.
Land banking companies typically promote the investment with representations of high potential returns if the land is redeveloped, or if plans for rezoning and development are finalised.
Investors either purchase a lot in the land, or acquire an option to purchase a lot of land in an unregistered plan of subdivision. The option agreement is triggered at a time that the necessary development is approved by the local council.
While ASIC does not regulate direct property investment, ASIC considers that land banking schemes, depending on the particular scheme, may be a managed investment scheme and/or a financial product and that the promoters of these schemes should therefore hold an Australian financial services licence and register these schemes with ASIC.
Editor's note 1
On 10 August 2015, the Federal Court accepted undertakings from Messrs Jamie and Dennis McIntyre that until 5 November 2015, they would give notice to ASIC of any travel outside of Australia and would deliver their passports to their solicitors.
The matter has now been set down for hearing on 8 October 2015 at 10:15am, without the parties being required to appear on the first return date of 14 August 2015.
Editor's Note 2
On 21 August 2015, the Federal Court of Australia accepted undertakings from each of the defendants, including Jamie McIntyre, that until further order or agreement with ASIC, they would not promote the developments, act in furtherance of the developments, receive, solicit or dispose of any funds in connection with the developments, remove any assets from Australia or charge any assets and dispose of or destroy any books and records in relation to the developments.
The undertakings allow the defendants to make interest payments in relation to the loan entered into by Bendigo Vineyard Estate Pty Ltd for the Bendigo Vineyard Estate & Resort development.
Editor's note 3
On 8 September 2015, the Court heard and refused an application by the respondents to vary undertakings given by them to the Court on 21 August 2015 so as to enable the fourth respondent (Secret Valley Estate Pty Ltd) to settle the purchase of land.
Editor's note 4
Jamie McIntyre refers to his companies as the "21st Century Group". 21st Century Group Pty Ltd (ACN 108 150 545) is not a defendant to the proceeding, and ASIC is not aware of any connection between 21st Century Group Pty Ltd and the defendants.
Editor's note 5
On 7 October 2015, the Federal Court made orders appointing provisional liquidators to the five development companies and injunctions preventing all of the respondents, including Mr Jamie McIntyre and Mr Dennis McIntyre, from promoting the five schemes. The proceeding was set down for a directions hearing on 4 December 2015 and the provisional liquidators were ordered to report back to the Court on 19 November 2015 (refer: 15-289MR).
Editor's note 6
On 5 November 2015, the Federal Court accepted an extension of the undertakings from Messrs Jamie and Dennis McIntyre that until 4pm on 4 December 2015, they would give notice to ASIC of any travel outside of Australia and deliver their passports to their solicitors.
Editor's note 7
On 10 November 2015, the Federal Court made orders extending the time for the provisional liquidators to provide their report to 15 December 2015.
Editor's note 8
On 3 December 2015, the Federal Court adjourned and re-listed the directions hearing for 5 February 2016. The Federal Court also accepted an extension of the undertakings from Messrs Jamie and Dennis McIntyre that until 4pm on 5 February 2016, they would give notice to ASIC of any travel outside of Australia and deliver their passports to their solicitors.
Editor's note 9
On 5 February 2016, the Federal Court re-listed the matter for a further directions hearing on 10 March 2016. The Federal Court also accepted an extension of the undertakings from Messrs Jamie and Dennis McIntyre that until 4pm on 10 March 2016, they would give notice to ASIC of any travel outside of Australia and deliver their passports to their solicitors.
Editor's note 10
On 10 March 2016, the Federal Court of Australia has made orders appointing liquidators to companies associated with Jamie McIntyre and 21st Century land banking companies (refer: 16-077MR). The matter adjourned for a further directions hearing at 10:15am on Friday 8 April 2016.
Editor's note 11:
On 7 April 2016, the Federal Court of Australia re-listed the matter for a directions hearing at 10:15am on 2 September 2016. The trial has been set down for hearing for 3 days commencing 17 October 2016.
Editor's note 12:
On 30 August 2016, the Federal Court of Australia adjourned the directions hearing to 10:15am on 4 October 2016 and referred the proceedings to a mediation to occur no later than 30 September 2016.
Editor's note 13:
On 17 October 2016, the Federal Court made final orders against Jamie McIntyre, Dennis McIntyre and the corporate respondents (refer: 16-357MR).