From what we can presently ascertain the majority of solicitors who acted for the investors on the sales contracts were recommended to the investors by Ralan salespeople.
It therefore seems these solicitors were, through their acting for multiple investors, in possession of more knowledge than if they had been acting just for one. In particular they may have known that Ralan was asking their clients to release the deposits.
In the circumstances they would likely have had a duty to warn all investors they acted for that:
- Releasing the deposit was atypical conveyancing practice;
- Ralan was operating an unlicenced debenture scheme which exposed its operators to civil and criminal penalties;
- The above two points and the 15% interest rate being offered suggested:
a. Ralan was under financial stress.
b. Ralan was operating a Ponzi scheme (in as much as the money raised from investors was being used to pay interest to other investors).
- In the absence of a prospectus there was no way for the investors to ascertain or judge the risk involved.
The case against the solicitors depends heavily upon evidence about what each of the solicitors in question knew. Evidence from one person’s case will be evidence in another person’s case.
For this reason we are asking for all investors who have lost money to register with us. We will then be asking you to provide us with copies of the documents and emails you have relating to the transaction so we can assess your cases individually and as a group.