Polo for bankrupt ex-Rich Lister Michael King of MFS

Mr King and a fellow MFS co-founder were estimated by BRW’s Rich List in 2007 to command a combined $ 370 million fortune. Gold Coast-based MFS managed nearly $ 3 billion in funds but came unstuck in the global financial crisis. Mr King resigned in 2008 and the business later collapsed.

Mr King owes almost $ 200 million to the Premium Income Fund, part of the failed MFS empire and whose investors, including retirees, were wiped out. The Australian Securities and Investments Commission, which had initiated civil action against MFS executives, owed $ 7.4 million.

Polo enthusiast

The businessman has long had an affiliation with polo, and appears on a tournament list as one of four members of the Metahorses polo team competing this weekend at the Kerry Packer Challenge Cup at Ellerston Polo Club in NSW. The team is captained by elite polo player “Hands” Baillieu, who boasts an impressive 6 handicap out of a scale of -2 to 10. Mr King’s handicap is 0.

The tournament guide does not list which business is the patron of the team. Entry conditions include a $ 10,000 nomination fee.

Mr King, a former lawyer, is also listed as having played in other tournaments in the previous two years.

In a filing about his financial position with the Australian Financial Security Authority on Christmas Eve, Mr King said he had only $ 20 cash in his name and no assets which could be used to pay back creditors.

His bankruptcy trustee, Adam Ward of Worrells, has revealed in a subsequent report to creditors that it was understood Mr King had been living in a “property owned by his non-bankrupt spouse and his living expenses are being paid by a friend / associate” . Sources say they are examining if Mr Fung is the friend.

Mr King also maintained in his filing he had not been employed since 2008. That contrasted with him providing a media interview in 2017 saying he was a property advisor for Mr Fung’s Aquis. Aquis had also confirmed in 2014 that Mr King had been a project manager for a plan then for a resort-casino around Cairns.

The varying accounts have been questioned by Mr Ward.

“Our office has written to Mr King to confirm his prior and / or current association with Aquis Entertainment (and its associated companies and persons) as well as the amount of funds he is regularly receiving to pay for his living expenses, and whether or not he provides any services in consideration for payment of those living expenses, ”Mr Ward wrote.

“Upon receipt, the trustee will finalize his assessment of Mr King’s liability (if any) to make income contribution payments to his bankrupt estate.”

Mr King was among the top MFS brass who lost a civil case initiated by ASIC that resulted in a scathing judgment and a 20-year ban on him managing corporations in May 2017.

Mr King and other MFS executives in that case were found to have breached the Corporate Act over the misappropriation of $ 147.5 million held by the associated Premium Income Fund. The money was used to pay debts owed by other MFS entities, ASIC said.

He had also sold seven properties between 2009 and 2013, most at south-east Queensland’s Elysian Fields, an equestrian estate featuring polo playing fields and where Elton John played an outdoor concert. Aquis now owns a large amount of that property.

The bankruptcy trustee asked about those property proceeds. “In response, Mr King advised that he did not receive any sale process as all funds realized from sales were remitted to the Commonwealth Bank of Australia in repayment of secured loans of the Commonwealth Bank… held over each property,” the bankruptcy report says. .

A dividend to pay creditors was “unlikely” at the time, the bankruptcy report said. Options for financing further investigation of matters generally, for recovery of any funds, may include trustees asking creditors to tip money into a pool.

Attempts to obtain comment from Mr King, via post and his lawyers, have been unsuccessful. Aquis did not respond to queries.

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