In my experience,which includes being a preferred creditor [twice],most of the money in these liquidations seems to wind up in the hands of the liquidators - the only exception being money owed to secured creditors.So the Commission's decision is good to hear.Sadly,though,the players are right - too much money will have leaked away by now.Also,there will be costs involved in distributing what is left,and probably those will come out of the players' funds,since there won't be any other money left.
Whilst I agree with Quincunx in regard to liquidators tending to end up with a larges slice of a company's unsecured funds, the point in this case is that the ACT Commission is arguing that the funds were not part of the company's assets but belonged to punters in what were supposed to be segregated accounts. If they are correct then the liquidator has no claim to them at all to pay his own costs or unsecured creditors. They would be funds which the regulator should have control of to satisfy punters' claims.
It's all far too late for the ACT Regulator to now start taking such an interest after years of neglecting their role. The affected punters' best hope is either for the ombudsman to find that the Commission was inept and responsible for their losses and recommend the government satisfy punters' claims or that the punters pursue a class action against the Commission.
Bent & Cougle are obviously not responsible for the way the management run SportsAlive, but never showed any interest in helping players.
I even offered to reimburse the players that had signed up through BMR myself if liquidators could provide me proofs of who they were and they ignored my offer.
There were a number of bookmakers, including a couple of local Australian bookmakers, interested in offering a bailout to SA players, but again the liquidators went for the first offer they got from Tom Waterhouse, who paid $1200 for the domain.
Even the cheapest online cyber squatter would at that time have paid more for the sportsalive.com domain knowing that it was getting 1000s of clicks every day
The Supreme Court of Victoria has handed down a decision that permits the liquidator to apply all monies held in Sports Alive's accounts towards their own costs and satisfying claims by secured creditors.
The Court could find no evidence that any of those accounts were segregated accounts of trust monies belonging to punters!
Punters now have to rely on the ACT Ombudsman finding that the GRC failed in it's duty to protect them or institute costly legal proceedings against the GRC and ACT Government.