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17-007MR VU for Victorian liquidator after failure to discharge duties
ASIC has accepted a voluntary undertaking (VU) from Melbourne-based registered liquidator, Richard Trygve Rohrt, after an ASIC review of several external administrations found he had failed to adequately discharge his duties. Mr Rohrt conducts his practice through Hamilton Murphy Pty Ltd; a company of which he is sole director.
Under the VU, Mr Rohrt agreed to:
- have an independent quality reviewer complete reviews between 28 February 2017 and 30 November 2017 on 12 external administrations;
- maintain adequate practice capacity for the size and complexity of appointments that he undertakes;
- not seek approval to draw remuneration of $101,000 of unrecovered time costs for the voluntary administration of two companies; and
- train professional staff of his firm on how to deal with aggrieved creditors.
ASIC reviewed several of Mr Rohrt's external administrations and he acknowledged that in some, but not necessarily all, of the external administrations:
- documentation on some files was not satisfactory which may indicate inadequate review by him and/or inadequate capacity at that point in time;
- he did not undertake and/or document adequate pre-appointment reviews of his independence and some of his Declarations of Independence, Relevant Relationships and Indemnities were deficient;
- he did not properly investigate and/or investigate in a timely manner the financial circumstances of the companies and the potential illegal phoenix activities of directors and their advisors;
- he failed to report to ASIC, in a timely manner, possible offences by company officers;
- he did not follow a structured program for the sale of assets; and
- he failed to deal with an aggrieved creditor in a professional manner during a creditors' meeting.
ASIC acknowledges Mr Rohrt's cooperation and, following ASIC's reviews, Mr Rohrt took steps to remedy deficiencies and improve compliance procedures and culture.