The legal proceedings surrounding banned former Adelaide insurance broker Craig John Horsell moved closer to their conclusion yesterday with Horsell appearing in court for submissions on sentencing.
The appearance in the Adelaide District Court was Horsell’s seventh in relation to 88 charges of dishonestly using his position with the intent to gain advantage.
The Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions is prosecuting the matter with reports from news.com.au stating Commonwealth prosecutor Greg Williams claiming the reason for the offenses was personal gain and the sentence should be severe enough to deter others.
Defence lawyer Lindy Powell QC stated Horsell’s case was out of the ordinary but argued there were circumstances which mitigated for a suspended sentence. If convicted, each offence carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison.
The case was adjourned until 21 March but legal proceedings began over a year in early January 2012. At that time the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) permanently banned Horsell in January 2012 from providing financial services claiming he dishonestly obtained more than $400,000 from clients over a two-year period.
At the time Horsell was an employee and a director of two insurance brokers Horsell International Pty Ltd (HIPL) and PSC Horsell Insurance Brokers Pty Ltd (PHIB) between 22 January 2007 and 23 July 2010.
ASIC found that between 7 September 2007 and 4 May 2010 Horsell acted dishonestly and in breach of financial services laws by transferring 88 insurance premium payments from clients totalling $414,299.87 into his bank account and not purchasing the insurance products requested by clients.
Timeline of Horsell’s legal proceedings:
9 Jan 2012 – Banned by ASIC
29 June 2012 – First court appearance
11 September 2012 – matter heard and adjourned for Horsell to answer the charges
12 October 2012 - matter heard and adjourned for Horsell to answer the charges
26 October 2012 – matter heard and adjourned
16 November 2012 – Horsell pleads guilty to three charges of dishonestly using his position to authorise payments totalling $414,299.87 into his personal bank account. Horsell is remanded to appear in the District Court on 17 December 2012 for sentence.
17 December 2012 Mr Horsell is remanded to reappear in the Adelaide District Court on 11 February 2013 for sentence.
11 February 2013 the matter was adjourned until 21 March 2013 for further submissions on sentence.