One of the clients of the collapsed stockbroking firm Opes Prime, who is believed to be the Sydney criminal lawyer Chris Murphy, received covering of his personal losses in the amount of $145 mln, as the value of his share portfolio fell down. The head of the firm told his staff to falsify the accounts of five more rich clients, to shield them from sharemarket losses of up to $200 mln; concerning Mr Murphy, there is no suggestion that he was aware of the alleged manipulation.
The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) informed the Federal Ð¡ourt about the results of preliminary investigations, which indicated that the Opes shares were borrowed from other clients’ portfolios to ensure the six wealthy clients will receive the refund. ASIC also told the court that there may be involved the company controlled by Opes directors, which is registered in the British Virgin Islands but which operates in Singapore.
During the last hearing, a senior investigator of ASIC, Richard Vandeloo, told Justice Ray Finkelstein that after having a talk to the employees of the firm, the company’s receivers from Deloitte, Sal Algeri and Chris Campbell, told ASIC about allegations of fraud and manipulation of Opes clients’ broking records. Also, Mr Vandeloo told the judge that one of the six had business links to Mr Emini, and either the receivers or Opes staff had suggested to ASIC that one of the six clients was involved in the alleged fraud. ANZ Bank, Opes’s main financier, appointed receivers to recover $650 million owed to the bank.
After these allegations, Justice Finkelstein granted ASIC an order barring the head of Opes Prime from leaving the country.