It must have been a monumental stuff up of all proportions when the so called Senate Hearing in Melbourne led by Senator Sam Dastyari turned into a farce, as the Senate Hearing star victim witness Grazyna Monka was discovered to not even have lost any money.
Senator Dastyari tried to grill Jamie McIntyre, but got a grilling from McIntyre instead over his apparent ignorance of land banking, how to solve the housing affordability crisis and apparent lack of integrity. Individuals at the Senate Hearing alleged that he had been working in collusion with discredited Fairfax journalist Simon Johanson (who has been accused of planting the stories that triggered the investigation by ASIC in return for payments).
Combine this with failed developer Nejat Mackali who put one of his Shepparton land projects into liquidation, which McIntyre had to step in and cover $4.7 million in option liabilities in 2013 to protect option holders.
When interviewed by ANR about the Senate Hearing McIntyre said, “I decided to accept the invite to speak at the hearing as I have nothing to hide and my companies have acted with integrity to protect our option holders. I was naive to think the Senators would be men of honesty and integrity. They should genuinely want to see a viable way to solve the housing affordability crisis in Australia. Also the Senators should be concerned regarding the poor culture within the ASIC, and their disregard in causing $6 million in unnecessary investor losses in land banking projects because of their deliberate sabotage and refusal to allow refunds to option holders to resolve the matter or for the projects to be licensed. I believe these were clear grounds to ask the Senate to make some enquiries.
“My submission, which will be made publicly available listed a series of questions that should be asked of the ASIC by the Senate (http://www.australiannationalreview.com/questions-asic-answer-senate-submission/).
“Yet, it has become very clear that this was not a genuine enquiry into land banking. It was nothing but an attempted ambush. They flew in a so called victim of land banking that admitted to be effectively groomed by Fairfax owned The Age newspaper to think she was a victim.
Yet it became an embarrassment for the Senate Hearing when it was discovered that the so called victim had mistakenly thought the land project she had invested in had gone into liquidation because Fairfax had told her so. It actually hadn’t and her investment was in tact and the 21st Century Group had also given her a $60,000 second option for free”, he said.
Not only had she not lost money, but she also received an extra $60,000 in options at no charge from McIntyre’s generosity, but had been deliberately misled by Fairfax that she had somehow lost money.
McIntyre said it had become obvious that this was all a set up orchestrated from day one.
“We weren’t sure who was behind it but now we know. It appears Senator Dastyari no doubt got ASIC to launch an expensive taxpayer investigation based on fake stories they had Fairfax publish to use as an excuse to start a trumped up allegation.
“It was reported to me after I spoke at the Senate Hearing that members of the public clearly saw the developer Nejat Mackali whose development in 805 Archer Road, Shepparton collapsed, which I had acquired off administrators in 2013. We also learned that he was seen passing a handwritten note to disgraced Fairfax journalists Simon Johanson, who was then texting Senator Dastyari at the front of the room during the hearing when they were questioning me”, he said.
Nejat Mackali was identified also to be sitting next to ASIC officer Rosemary Prendergast, the lead lawyer for ASIC heading up the case against McIntyre in the Federal Court.
McIntyre said, “we weren’t sure until today who was behind these trumped up allegations but now it’s clear. Senator Dastyari, Nejat Mackali the failed Shepparton developer, the disgraced Fairfax journalist and the ASIC officers are all working in tandem and this was seen in full public view”.
It also explains why despite providing to ASIC sometime ago full detailed information about Nejat Mackali (who after his development received $4.7 million in option fees decided to put it into liquidation), ASIC has refused to investigate him or help find the money McIntyre asked ASIC to locate.
McIntyre approached the administrators in 2013 and acquired the site 805 Archer Road and become an effective white knight when he took over $4.7 million in option liabilities to bail out land option holders despite not being legally obligated to.
He said Nejat Mackali has had it in for him ever since because he not only bought his former project, but also refused to sell it back to him for almost or nothing.
“He has been trying to extort me ever since with threats, which I ignore. Fairfax and them try to imply my projects are linked to a former property spruiker because his sister used to work for one of my companies.
“Yet my land projects have no external partners (as evidenced by the ASIC shareholder registry) and no relationship whatsoever. It is just attempted extortion to defame me”.
The so called victim the Senate Hearing tried to put up- Ms Monka, was then issued by McIntyre’s company $60,000 option for free in 2013 as a back up in case the land project 425 Raftery road she had acquired options in (also owned by Developer Nejat Mackali) went into liquidation.
To date it hasn’t, and Nejat Mackali claims it is on track and proceeding. Thus Ms Monka’s investment remains in tact.
McIntyre said surely when trying to pull off a set up like this, the Senators, ASIC, Fairfax and failed Shepparton developer busily all working together should surely check the facts and find a victim who has actually lost money.
“Of course they can’t, as no one has lost money. So now they had to brainwash some poor woman to fool her that somehow she had lost her investment.
“This poor woman has suffered stress for two years thinking she had lost her investment when she hadn’t. She invested into a Nejat Mackali project, the Developer ironically working with ASIC, Fairfax and Senator Dastyari.
“It’s become almost comical and is embarrassing for our country that Senators are involved in this sort of behaviour. I’m embarrassed for our country. Talk about a kangaroo court. This saga is becoming a badly rated soap opera”, he said.
McIntyre said, there are no victims and no clients of his have lost a single cent in options in any of his land banking projects, despite Fairfax claiming $100 million had been lost.
The $100 million claim by Fairfax has since been proven to be fictitious and it was believed ASIC used these fake Fairfax articles by disgraced journalist Simon Johanson to launch an expensive taxpayer funded investigation, which many say is a set up to stop McIntyre’s new political party, which he launched in 2013.
This is why Fairfax and ASIC are desperate for investor losses, as they claimed $100 million had been lost and Senator Dastyari in the Senate Hearing tried to inflate the figure to $500 million.
He knows how to try and get headlines, McIntyre said.
“I feel sorry for our country if this is the sort of immature and naive politicians we have in Canberra. No wonder voters are dismayed”.
McIntyre said it was interesting that the Senator grossly exaggerated the figure of so-called losses to $500 million.
“We only ever sold $5.8 million in options in our land projects, which are perfectly legal. To resolve the dispute we offered to license them if need be and also refund them. However, ASIC has continually refused and we are under Federal Court orders that we can’t.
“So option holders will lose the $5.8 million next week when ASIC appoint provisional liquidators, even though they aren’t necessary. So finally ASIC, the Senators and Fairfax will have some of the losses they have been claiming.
“It’s a pity they all had to go to great lengths together to achieve the losses. A job well done guys! You must all be so proud of yourselves”, McIntyre said.
McIntyre said he would be exiting the property industry in Australia.
He said, “if this is the way the country works where suspect Senators are colluding with dodgy developers that are trying to extort me with the help of disgraced journalists, and have the backing of a powerful government regulator that don’t care about losing investors’ money- then I am wasting my time trying to provide the country with financial innovation to help solve some of its major issues, such as housing affordability.
“After the Senate Hearing I am actually embarrassed to be an Australian. Surely there must be some honest Senators and MPs out there with integrity and courage to see what’s going on.
“Either way I am not prepared to waste any more time on that matter. There are better things to do than fight a group that consists of a dodgy developer working with a disgraced journalist, a suspect Senator and a government department wanting to cause $5.8 million in investor losses.
“I feel sorry for the option holders who ASIC and this collection of individuals colluding together will be causing losses to”, he said.
Senator Xenophon had also been blasted for contacting Arnold Schwarzenegger’s office, asking the former Governor of California to repay the fees, which Xenophon alleges the land banking companies paid Arnie to promote. “Yet, once again the ignorance of the Senator is baffling- considering the five land projects didn’t even come into existence and neither were they marketed until after June 2014 (and one had to be a paid member to even qualify to access it). Arnie spoke in June 2013 and was engaged by 21st Century Education, not any land banking companies”, said McIntyre.
He had earmarked $75 million in future land lots across five of his land projects mainly in Victoria and one in Townsville for the homeless and women escaping domestic violence.
The plan was to donate the land for select charities helping the under privileged, especially women suffering from domestic violence to have homes built for them to be able to live in safety.
Australia’s new Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull recently announced $150 million from the Federal Government towards the same domestic violence issue against women. Therefore, an individual donation of $75 million worth of land is quite significant and would have made a big difference, which could have inspired many other land developers to match it.
The charities would be able to sell the land to use the proceeds or have a home built, often with help of builders donating time and material.
However, due to the aggressive and what some say uncalled for action by Australia’s corporate watchdog, the donations will be prevented by ASIC’s unnecessary and deliberate actions in the Federal Court on October 8 2015.