Three-year ban for former Astarra auditor

By Reporter
 — 1 minute read
Ex-Astarra Strategic Fund auditor Timothy Frazer has agreed to an enforceable undertaking with ASIC.
former auditor of the failed Astarra Strategic Fund (ASF) has agreed to an enforceable undertaking with ASIC.

Under the EU, Timothy Frazer of WHK Audit & Risk Assessment has agreed not to act as a registered company auditor for three years.

Frazer will also participate in 15 hours of continuing professional education on audit related matters during the three-year period.

As well as being subject to the mandatory requirements of The Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia, Frazer will also submit the first three audits conducted by him following the three-year period for review by an ASIC-approved registered company auditor.

Frazer audited the 2008 financial report of Alpha Strategic Fund and the 2009 financial report of ASF.

ASIC chairman Greg Medcraft said the corporate regulator had concerns during the audits that Frazer failed to perform "adequately and properly" in his duties as an auditor.

ASIC also held concerns that he failed to ensure each audit was planned and performed with an attitude of professional scepticism.

"ASIC will not hesitate to ensure auditors who fail to discharge their responsibilities appropriately are restricted from participation in the industry," Medcraft said.

"Today's announcement is another outcome arising from ASIC's investigation of Trio Capital and its related entities as we continue to hold gatekeepers to account."

ASIC's key concerns regarding the 2008 audit centred on whether sufficient appropriate audit evidence was obtained in relation to the existence and valuation of investments.

The corporate regulator was also concerned over whether there was a sufficient understanding of ASF and its environment. Its environment includes the operations of EMA International Limited (EMA) and Global Consultants and Services Limited (GCSL) and the investments they made in order to identify, assess and respond to risks of material misstatement.

In terms of the 2009 audit, ASIC's concerns focused on whether sufficient work was performed to adequately consider the professional competence of the other auditors upon whom Frazer relied. 

There were also concerns over whether the work of the other auditors was adequate for his purposes; and a disclaimer of opinion was expressed given that the work of the other auditor on whom the audit relied in relation to the existence and valuation of investments had not been concluded as at the date of issuance of Frazer's opinion.


Three-year ban for former Astarra auditor
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