The corporate regulator has suspended the registration of Amanda Young as a liquidator indefinitely, with effect from 18 December 2018.
Ms Young, a Jirsch Sutherland partner, has had her employment terminated and has resigned all her external administration appointments, with Justice Black of the Supreme Court of New South Wales appointing managing partner Bradd Morelli and partners Trent Devine and Andrew Spring to her files.
It is understood that Ms Young had been the sole appointee to 22 companies as an external administrator.
In a statement to My Business’ sister title Accountants Daily, Mr Morelli said that investigations from Jirsch Sutherland had found that $238,502.23 had been inappropriately taken from four liquidation accounts and directed to accounts operated or controlled personally by Ms Young.
The four liquidation accounts include Mamak Pty Limited (in liquidation), Roller Poster Company Pty Limited (in liquidation), St Gregory’s Armenian School Inc (in liquidation) and Admark Property Group Pty Limited (in liquidation).
A further $45,000 was recovered from solicitors’ trust accounts, but Mr Morelli believes that the law firms were not involved in the alleged misconduct.
“In each case, these transfers took place without the knowledge or approval of any Jirsch Sutherland partner,” Mr Morelli said.
“There is no allegation or suspicion of any wrongdoing by any current Jirsch Sutherland member of staff or partner.”
He added: “The Jirsch Sutherland partners will be ensuring this week that all creditors of the relevant liquidations are advised of Amanda Young’s actions.
“These matters constitute a most egregious breach of trust, for which we are all profoundly disappointed.”
ASIC will appoint an independent reviewer at Jirsch Sutherland’s expense and will ensure creditors of all administrations receive a communication from Jirsch Sutherland fairly disclosing the circumstances of the change in liquidators.
The corporate regulator has also separately commenced an investigation into matters relating to Ms Young’s former administrations.
Ms Young had been promoted to partner in 2016 after 13 years at the business.