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Former Aussie broker admits to mortgage fraud

by Huntley Mitchell & Vivienne Kelly4 minute read

A former Aussie loan writer has pleaded guilty to multiple charges of mortgage fraud involving more than $5 million.

Madhvan Nair, a former broker at AHL Investments (trading as Aussie), appeared before the Downing Centre Local Court and admitted through his solicitor to knowingly submitting home loan applications and supporting documents which contained false information in order to secure approvals from NAB, Westpac and ANZ.

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An ASIC investigation found that between September 2012 and June 2014, Mr Nair submitted 18 loan applications totalling $5.6 million that contained false borrower employment documents. Of the 18 applications, 12 were approved and disbursed, totalling $3.7 million.

Mr Nair received $7,583.49 in commission on those 12 loans, the corporate regulator said. He also received $2,500 in cash payments from two of the loan applicants upon approval of their applications.

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“Mr Nair therefore received a financial benefit of $10,083.49 as a result of the approved loan applications,” ASIC said in a statement.

The 18 loan applications ranged in value from $10,000 to $490,875.

In a statement issued to The Adviser, Aussie said it welcomed the charges" brought by ASIC and noted it had suspended Mr Nair's contract on 24 June, 2014, before terminating it on 7 July. 

The group said the suspension and termination were a result of serious breaches of Aussie's strict code of conduct and legal, credit and compliance obligations.

Aussie also said it fully cooperated with ASIC in its investigation by providing the regulator with results of the internal investigation as well as loan files, supporting documentation and other evidence to assist ASIC in its prosecution. 

The brokerage used the opportunity to reiterate its commitment to best practice and caution other brokers against misconduct.

Aussie strictly prohibits its brokers from receiving any direct payment from any lender, referral partner or customer and was not aware of cash payments made by customers to Mr Nair.

Aussie has a zero tolerance policy to any infringements and believes it has some of the most stringent compliance processes in the industry. Aussie proactively and voluntarily reports any terminated brokers to ASIC and to lenders as part of its governance activity, the statement said. 

Mr Nair next appears in court on 30 August for sentencing.

[Related: ASIC targets brokerages for misleading Chinese buyers]

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