Published 19 November 2010
The Securities Commission confirmed yesterday that it had laid criminal charges against Huljich Wealth Management (NZ) Ltd & director Peter Huljich over the Huljich KiwiSaver Scheme for which they are promoters.
The commission alleges Mr Huljich & Huljich Wealth Management misled prospective investors by misrepresenting the investment performance of the scheme’s funds in offer documents. The offer documents contained graphs comparing the Huljich KiwiSaver Funds’ investment performance to competing KiwiSaver funds, but failed to disclose that the Huljich performance figures included related-party payments made at Mr Huljich’s direction. Those payments had a significant impact on the Huljich KiwiSaver Funds’ investment performance figures.
The commission also alleges Mr Huljich made untrue statements in the scheme’s registered prospectuses, which included summary financial performance information but failed to disclose the related-party payments. “The registered prospectuses also stated that the financial statements were prepared in accordance with New Zealand generally accepted accounting practice, and complied with NZ equivalents to international financial reporting standards and other applicable New Zealand financial reporting standards, although the financial statements didn’t comply with NZ IAS 24 related party disclosures.”
The commission alleges that the misleading & false statements were made in the scheme’s registered prospectus dated 22 August 2008 as amended on 13 February 2009, the registered prospectus dated 18 September 2009 and investment statements distributed during the period 1 May 2008-25 January 2010.
The criminal charges have been laid summarily under section 58(3) of the Securities Act, which carries a maximum penalty of 3 months’ jail or a $300,000 fine, and under section 59(1)(c) of the Securities Act, which carries a maximum penalty of a $300,000 fine.
The first call of the charges will be in the Auckland District Court on Friday 14 January.
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Attribution: Commission release, story written by Bob Dey for the Bob Dey Property Report.