The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has permanently banned former Melbourne adviser Robert Shane Michael from providing financial services, after it found he was dishonestly borrowing money from his clients' self-managed super funds (SMSFs) for his own personal expenses.
ASIC's investigation found that between April 2012 to September 2018, the Bentleigh based adviser had procured loans from four of his clients' SMSF accounts totalling A$204,000. The loans were used for his own personal expenditure which included staving off bankruptcy, paying private school fees, gambling and other expenses.
The corporate regulator deemed Michael's conduct as dishonest, misleading and deceptive, also finding that he failed to disclose commissions on investments that he recommended and implemented on behalf of clients while failing to disclose a conflict of interest and failed to prioritise clients' needs ahead of his own.
He also failed to act in the best interest of clients in relation to loans procured from clients and recommended high risk investments which were contrary to clients' risk appetites, ASIC said.
From August 2009-July 2017, Michael was an authorised representative of Marigold Falconer International Pty and Allied Financial Solutions Pty through his business RM Wealth Management Pty.
He was found to have breached financial services laws and was not of good fame and character on 26 July, 2019. He has a right to lodge an application for review with the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.
His banning will be recorded on ASIC's Financial Advisers Register.