AFP arrests director linked to $2.5m loan scandal

by Miklos Bolza24 Jul 2017
The director of a property investment consultancy linked with a jailed former Westpac loan manager has been arrested following an investigation by the Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC).

Bradley Silver, former director of Gold Coast property development company Capital Growth, was arrested by the Australian Federal Police at Brisbane Airport on 20 July. He was brought before the Brisbane Magistrates Court on the same day, charged with seven counts of fraud to the value of $2.32m and six counts of dishonest use of his position as a director.

Silver has been released on conditional bail and will appear in the Brisbane Magistrates Court on 25 August. Bail conditions included surrendering his passport and refraining from leaving Australia or approaching any point of departure.

As well as being a director of Capital Growth, Silver was also associated with a company called All About Property Developments.

Together, the firms jointly ran a Tasmanian property development scheme which was utilised by former Westpac home finance manager David St Pierre. St Pierre was jailed in February this year for encouraging 11 elderly customers to borrow hundreds of thousands of dollars and invest in the scheme between 2008 and 2013.

One woman, who was 98 years old, was signed up to a 30 year loan. St Pierre then submitted the loan applications to Westpac using false documents and received cash bonuses of up to $15,000.

While at Westpac, he obtained over $2.5m from investors and placed it into the now failed property development scheme. St Pierre was banned by ASIC in 2014 from engaging in credit activities.

Investors agreed to loans between $100,000 and $740,000 after being told that the scheme was a fixed investment with 15% return, the Gold Coast Bulletin reported.

One investor talking to the paper said he was approached in November 2010 and signed off on a $350,000 loan. He arrived at Silver’s Capital Growth offices three months afterwards to find “it was totally empty with no furniture or employees as there had been before”.

Both Capital Growth and All About Property Developments were placed into liquidation in February 2011, owing investors about $9m.

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