Jirsch partner suspended amid fraud investigation

Amanda Young under investigation

Suspended Jirsch Sutherland partner Amanda Young. Image: Linked In.

Jirsch Sutherland partner Amanda Young has been suspended as authorities investigate an alleged fraud.

In a statement to Insolvency News Online yesterday Jirsch Sutherland managing partner Bradd Morelli confirmed an employee had been stood down and an external investigation was underway.

“Jirsch Sutherland has identified a case of possible fraud by an individual employee and has taken immediate action to investigate and report the matter,” Morelli said.

“The employment of this person has been suspended with immediate effect.”

While Young was not identified INO’s sources confirmed she was the employee in question, saying Morelli travelled from his base in Newcastle to tell Young’s Sydney colleagues on Wednesday.

The sources said that bank reconciliations in relation to a company called Mamak Pty Limited identified unsupported payments that were subsequently traced to Young’s bank accounts. Morelli did not respond to requests for confirmation of these details, which remain unsubstantiated.

According to ASIC records, Young was appointed liquidator of Mamak Pty Limited in June 2018.

The move by Morelli to suspend Young comes only weeks after she resigned as a member of the Australian Restructuring Insolvency & Turnaround Association (ARITA).

Her details appear to have also been removed from the Jirsch Sutherland website though her Linked In profile remains unchanged. Young has worked at the firm since 2003.

At time of writing this morning the ASIC online professional register gave no indication that her liquidator’s registration – earned in 2013 – is subject to any form of suspension other than the usual requirement for continuous professional development.

In his statement Morelli said the irregularities had been reported to the appropriate authorities.

“Jirsch Sutherland takes this type of activity very seriously,” he said.

“We acted immediately, investigated matters and reported them to and continue to cooperate with the relevant authorities.

“Where Jirsch Sutherland has identified any circumstances that our Partners consider to be a misappropriation of funds, these have been reimbursed by the firm.

“If the alleged fraud is proven, it represents a most serious breach of trust by an employee,” he said.

“It is incumbent on the Partners of Jirsch Sutherland to protect the interests of our clients and we remain committed to maintaining the highest standards of integrity, honesty and transparency in everything we do.”

Jirsch is preparing to replace Young on all formal insolvency appointments where she is sole appointee.

INO searched Insolvency Notices and counted 50 entities where Young was sole appointee, the overwhelming majority being creditors voluntary liquidations.

We are unable to say how many files remain open. INO will update this report as more detail comes to hand.

About the Author

Peter Gosnell
Insolvency News Online illuminates the practice of insolvency Australia-wide, highlighting the triumphs and travails of the nation’s registered practitioners and the accounting and legal professionals who work with them. INO is produced by Peter Gosnell, former business editor and senior business reporter at The Daily Telegraph newspaper. During a decade-long career, your correspondent reported on such notable corporate collapses as HIH, One.Tel, Westpoint and Fincorp as well as some of the nation's highest profile bankruptcies and the investigations and prosecutions arising from Australia's most notorious instances of white-collar crime.

18 Comments on "Jirsch partner suspended amid fraud investigation"

  1. Possibly a consequence of ASIC’s unsuitable levy which forces sole appointees over joint & several appointments.
    I trust ASIC considered this consequence when it devised the levy.

  2. The approach by Mr Moretti appears to be consistent with proper practice and is to be commended.

    Integrity of members of the insolvency profession is a prerequisite to entitlement to practice and where there is a substantial allegation it is appropriate for the to be properly investigated and dealt with. If they are found not to be supported that should also be promoted.

  3. I think referring to Ms Young as employee seeks to diminish the seriousness of the matter. She is a partner, no less.

  4. We don’t think ASIC is directly to blame, but no less than an idiot would fail to see the link between a levy recently introduced which financially penalises joint appointments and the inherent risk of loss of supervision that comes with solo appointments. I repeat, only an idiot would fail to see that connection.

    • Are you saying IP’s cannot be trusted, they are after all Court appointed officers, regulatory framework is put in place to ensure compliance, same applies to a builder, doctor, or baker. As such there is no excuse I repeat NO EXCUSE for such behaviour, especially for one as precipient as an IP.

      • I’m with Jules and Honest Joe here.

        How people are blaming ASIC is beyond me.

        Should ASIC do more to supervise? Yes.

        But are they responsible for illegal conduct by personal individuals? No, people need to be accountable.

        As an industry we need to accept that there are too many reprehensible individuals. Peter does a good job exposing them. Throw the book at them and put them in prison.

  5. The other 600 or so practitioners will have to pick up her ASIC levy – Metrics, and I hope ASIC can recover the current years metrics due January 2019.

  6. Shirley, I am more worried about what ASIC will do to protect creditors. I hope ASIC gets involved and thoroughly investigated.

  7. Like reading a soap opera this industry what a joke , logic would be not to publish until the case and investigation has run its course but hey thats logic.

  8. The Truth is out there | 19 December 2018 at 8:01 am | Reply

    ASIC

    I am sure if the powers that be take a closer look, they may find it most probably has been going on for years.
    Noted a few getting a bit hot under the collar, probably friends or associates .

    Great story ,certainly brought a few comments out.
    Very good Peter

    PS good with that one Pnut.

    ASIC have no accountability, no direction.

  9. Shirley

    Jirsch will pay her current and future levy. There is no need to worry about that.

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