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18-021MR Daniel Panrucker removed from financial services industry for 10 years
Mr Daniel Panrucker, formerly of Balmain New South Wales, but resident in the United Kingdom since January 2016, has entered into an Enforceable Undertaking (" EU") with ASIC, that will see him and his deregistered company, Ava Securities Pty Ltd ("Ava Securities") banned from the financial services industry for ten years. Mr Panrucker is also prevented from managing a corporation for seven years.
The EU follows an ASIC investigation, which began in May 2014, into the conduct of Mr Panrucker, Ava Securities, Temple Resources Pty Ltd ("Temple"), Thracian Resources Pty Ltd ("Thracian Resources"), Thracian Resources Australia Pty Ltd ("Thracian Australia"), Welcome Gold Holdings Pty Ltd ("Welcome Gold") and associated individuals and corporations regarding suspected contraventions of the corporations legislation.
Mr Panrucker, a 45 year old British national used his company to offer capital raising services to start businesses (seed capital) particularly for mining and exploration companies. Temple, Thracian Resources and Thracian Australian were mining companies raising seed capital from the public. Mr Panrucker promoted the seed capital raising for Temple, Thracian Resources and Thracian Australia via his company. ASIC records show that Mr Panrucker was also a director of Temple, Thracian Australia and Welcome Gold.
ASIC was concerned that there had been a number of breaches of the corporations legislation, by either Mr Panrucker or companies of which he was a director or officer, including:
- Mr Panrucker was a director of companies on both sides of various transactions relating to the seed capital raising and did not disclose this conflict of interest to potential investors;
- From 9 April to 17 October 2014 Ava Securities provided financial services without having an AFSL or being an authorised representative;
- Receiving investors' money into Ava Securities' bank account although Ava Securities was not entitled to do this;
- Failing to segregate investors' money from Ava Securities' own money;
- Failing to keep sufficient documents recording purported commission arrangements and loan arrangements;
- Issuing false, misleading or deceptive Information Memoranda to potential investors;
- Offering securities to potential investors without a disclosure document;
- Making unauthorised payments to Mr Panrucker or Ava Securities; and
- Failing to keep separate company registers.
As a result of these contraventions, ASIC is concerned that Mr Panrucker did not act with due care and diligence in the performance of his directors' duties and used his position to obtain benefits for himself or companies of which he was a director.
Mr Panrucker acknowledges that ASIC's concerns are reasonably held.
ASIC Commissioner John Price said "Directors of companies seeking to raise funds from the public must ensure that all relevant information required by the Corporations Act is provided to prospective investors to ensure they are fully informed about the investment, and that investors' money is held by the company as required by law."
Under the EU, Mr Panrucker will also complete a course for directors offered by the Australian Institute of Company Directors before being eligible to manage an Australian corporation.
The exclusions from providing financial services and managing corporations will be noted in ASIC's Registers.
ASIC's investigation is ongoing. To date, as a result of this investigation, there have also been a number of other outcomes, including:
- In February 2015 ASIC issued a public warning notice about Shaun Gregory Morgan, a New Zealand national (also known as Shaun Monroe) and his companies (15-016MR).
- In June 2015 ASIC permanently banned Mr Morgan from providing financial services in light of his criminal conviction in the United States (15-140MR);
- In September 2015 Mr Morgan was also removed as a company director as a result of his criminal conviction in the United States (15-275MR); and
- In October 2016 Ashley Grant Howard was permanently banned from providing financial services. ASIC's investigation found that he had (among other things) engaged in dishonest conduct, conducted unauthorised trading, provided financial services without a licence, engaged in conduct likely to mislead and failed to comply with the Act by providing false information and using more than $1.8m in client funds for his benefit, or the benefit of others, including cosmetic surgery for his partner and the settling of debts to Jordan Belfort, the so-called "Wolf of Wall Street" (16-368MR).