FMA referred fraudster “broker” to IRD

Complaints about the conduct of “mortgage broker” David Simon Barton to the Financial Markets Authority led to his referral to the IRD and conviction for tax fraud, it has emerged.

The FMA said several complaints were made about Barton’s advice in recent years. Once the FMA looked into the case, it referred Barton to the IRD over unpaid taxes, a spokesman confirmed.

Barton’s dealings also caught the attention of the Police, according to an IRD spokesman: “The case became known to us via referral through NZ Police from the Financial Markets Authority, and that information indicated he was providing a mortgage broker or consultancy service and charging a fee.”

Barton was jailed this week following an IRD prosecution.  He was sentenced to three years and two months jail in the Waitakere District Court on 10 charges of failing to submit an income tax return with the intention of tax evasion for each of the tax years between 2008 and 2017. He is said to have evaded tax payments of more than $400,000.

Records reveal Barton has never been listed on the Financial Services Provider Register. It is highly likely he posed as a registered broker.  Barton was declared bankrupt in March this year. It is unclear whether he will face further prosecution for providing mortgage advice while unlicensed.

Barton, who is said to have provided advice in Auckland, also spent a stint behind bars in 2000 for fraud offences. The case has angered mortgage advisers who say Barton was an industry impostor. One told TMM: “He poses as a mortgage broker - he's a scam artist and is still ripping off hard-working homeowners.”

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