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Accountant faces 10 years’ jail, charged with forging signatures

Regulation

ASIC alleges the accountant falsified signatures in audits of 12 clients between 2015 and 2020.

By Josh Needs 9 minute read

Melbourne accountant Stephen Allen faces imprisonment after being charged with falsifying signatures on audit documents between July 2015 and November 2020. 

The sole director of K.H.N Holdings Pty Ltd, which traded as Alkemade and Associates, ASIC alleged Mr Allen used false signatures in connection with the audits of 12 clients across the period and falsified a form lodged with ASIC in February 2021.

The commission said the falsified signatures were used on several documents, which included audit opinions, auditor independence declarations, and independent audit reports and review reports. 

ASIC said the falsified signatures were included in annual reports and other financial statements that were lodged with ASIC and various other regulatory bodies. 

Mr Allen was also charged with falsifying a document by purporting to be a different registered company auditor and lodging that document to obtain consent from ASIC to resign as an auditor.

Mr Allen’s actions led to two offences, which were contravening s83A(1) of the Crimes Act 1958 (VIC) with a maximum penalty of 10 years’ imprisonment and contravening s1308(1) of the Corporations Act 2001, which has a maximum penalty of five years’ imprisonment. 

ASIC said Mr Allen holds accounting qualifications and memberships but had never been a registered company auditor and that K.H.N Holdings Pty Ltd had never been an authorised audit company. 

The proceedings are being heard in the County Court of Victoria with the matter being prosecuted by the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions after an investigation by ASIC.

ASIC said the matter would be heard at a first directions hearing in the County Court on 24 July.  

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Josh Needs

Josh Needs

AUTHOR

Josh Needs is a journalist at Accountants Daily and SMSF Adviser, which are the leading sources of news, strategy, and educational content for professionals in the accounting and SMSF sectors.

Josh studied journalism at the University of NSW and previously wrote news, feature articles and video reviews for Unsealed 4x4, a specialist offroad motoring website. Since joining the Momentum Media Team in 2022, Josh has written for Accountants Daily and SMSF Adviser.

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