Financial fraudster jailed for ripping off retirees

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A former financial planner from Brisbane has received a 10-year prison sentence for stealing almost $10 million from 39 trusting retirees seeking his advice.

Brad Thomas Sherwin, 62, was sentenced in the District Court in Brisbane following charges brought up after an Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) investigation into the $60 million collapse of his financial planning business.

Mr Sherwin received an additional 12 months for breaching his duties as director. He will be eligible for parole in four years.

He ran Sherwin Financial Planners and was a director in associated companies. He offered advice to help clients establish self-managed super funds into which money from their existing super funds would be rolled. When the clients’ money was held in his bank account he instructed the bank to use it to pay off his debts.

Before deciding on an appropriate sentence, Judge Julie Dick heard statements from some of his victims.

“It is difficult for me to articulate how difficult the past five years have been – I’ve experienced shock, grief, rage, helplessness and hopelessness,” Beverly Holliday said in a statement to the court.

“I have been denied the life I wish to live and I strongly consider he does not deserve the same liberties that I have lost as a result of his actions.”

Another victim, Amanda Spann, said: “What I am failing to understand is how anyone can treat good, honest, hardworking people the way he has.

“It makes me sick to the stomach how Sherwin’s collapses affected me – I had withdrawn from a beautiful relationship … I find myself looking for someone’s ulterior motive.”

Mr Sherwin’s lawyer plans to launch an appeal, saying his client is “definitely remorseful but it’s of little comfort as you heard from the victims”.

The former adviser has been permanently banned from providing financial services.

For full details of the case visit

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Written by Leon Della Bosca

Leon Della Bosca is a voracious reader who loves words. You'll often find him spending time in galleries, writing, designing, painting, drawing, or photographing and documenting street art. He has a publishing and graphic design background and loves movies and music, but then, who doesn’t?



Total Comments: 11
  1. 0

    What a joke of a sentence , 4 years and for 10 million.? No wonder people do it , it’s extremely well paid.

  2. 0

    Agree a totally inadequate for a crime of that magnitude. Not to forget the hardship and dispair he has placed on the victims. You are right, 2.5m a year, no wonder he gave it a try.

  3. 0

    10 years jail. Parole after 4. Living in luxury overseas after that?
    It is long time that the nonsense of ‘parole’ is reserved for deserving criminals not blatant crooks who have ruined many lives. I feel sorry for those who allowed this (latest) cretin to invest their life savings.
    As Geezer frequently says ‘do your own’. Something to be said about that but only for people with an IQ over 10.

    • 0

      I certainly hope he could not live overseas Mick, in luxury or otherwise.
      A. it would compound the sense of injustice if he ever got a passport, and
      B. would any other country want him with such a record of dishonesty.

    • 0

      Try any of the tax havens or South America. Not sure if this latest crook has squirrelled away the money he has thieved or just blown it but it certainly is a lot of money.

  4. 0

    NO. The 10 years should be the MINIMUM, not the max. Why should he be inconvenienced for only 4 years when he has ruined the retirements of so many.

    • 0

      I totally agree. Parole in 4 years, what a joke. With this bloody stupid parole system you can guarantee he will be out in 4. If he gets 10 years, that is what the greedy thieving bastard should get behind bars, plus all of his assets taken to compensate, to some degree those poor unfortunate people who were duped—not a year less. If he shows signs of remorse, perhaps he should try Hollywood !!!

  5. 0

    Do any of the victims get ANY of their money back? I lost half-a-million dollars in a failed business venture some years back, taken to the cleaners by some unscrupulous people who didn’t get their come-uppance at the time, and I still bear the emotional scars. It’s hard to start believing in anyone’s goodness again, after having your trust broken in this way. Getting back on track requires perseverance, courage, and a time of grieving. I made it through eventually, and hope these people do the same.

    • 0

      Sorry to hear disillusioned
      I went through same and still bear the scars . Don’t think I’ll ever get over it .

    • 0

      Sorry disillusioned. I to o lost a lot to a failed business venture. And it does take the wind out of your sails for a long time. It still hurts after many years. Glad you got back on track. Overcoming adversity can be rewarding in subtle ways.

  6. 0

    I could not see any justice. Should I go back to school? I was taught 10+1 = 11.
    10 +1 = 4 so this is = justice !!!



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