Queensland court must unravel monstrous property title scandal
By TONY MOBILIFONTIS
QUEENSLAND and Australia’s corrupted property title and associated law will be laid bare before the Northern Division of the Supreme Court of Queensland on March 30th when former One Nation senator Len Harris presents evidence in his case to have the Land Act 1994 struck down as being beyond legal power.
Harris has set up a GoFundMe account under the title The Silent Majority to fund the court costs. The hearing will take place at the Supreme Court at 5A Sheridan St Cairns at 10am. “We are asking people to start arriving at 9.30am so as to get through security and up to Court 1 on the fourth floor,” Harris told Cairns News.
Parchment property title deeds, traditionally the proof of your ownership of property, have not only been declared null and void but the records of their existence destroyed by the Queensland government on October 1, 2019. A complicated scheme of government and corporate chicanery has turned the titles into digital entities held by an uncertain “Register”. Settlement of property transactions is handled by three private companies.
Australians who care about their sacred right of property ownership might consider the diabolical threat to the world of the World Economic Forum – “It is 2030 and you own nothing but you will be happy”.
The shocking situation that puts your property title deed in the hands of an unknown entity with no guarantee that they won’t be seized in some sort of future “Great Reset” came about a few years ago when governments announced they were implementing a new property title electronic lodgement system.
The very real threat is that these companies may become the target of a hostile takeover action by some foreign corporation, putting the integrity of property titles in serious doubt.
A director of one of the three electronic lodgement operators, Property Exchange Australia (Pexa) Ltd, has told Len Harris that they don’t hold titles. They merely complete the buyer-seller transaction and the “title” – an electronic binary code – is lodged with another entity. The two other operators of the system are Purcell Partners Pty Ltd and Sympli Australia Pty Ltd.
The beginnings of this scandal go back to 2012 when the Victorian and NSW governments developed the electronic lodgement system for property titles. The NSW government took their Act to a COAG (Council of Australian Governments) meeting to have it adopted Australia-wide after 75% of the state and territory COAG members agreed.
Harris notes that the Queensland Act mirrors the NSW Act but was never debated in Parliament and the Queensland government cannot alter the Act.
COAG, without consulting the Australian people, then set up a body called ARNECC – the Australian Registrars National Electronic Conveyancing Council – to act as the overarching authority on our property titles. Most Australians had never heard of this organisation, let alone being consulted over how it would affect their property titles. ARNECC issued licences to the companies holding the now “electronic titles”.
So the very titles we once held and could access at any time and show as evidence that we are the lawful owners of our property, came under the control of corporate Big Brother, the three companies and government entities that few people had even heard of until recently. The companies are officially known as ELNOs – electronic lodgment network operators – whose role is to facilitate property settlements between sellers and purchaser and then notify the Titles Registry. But Harris says which registry the titles go to is a grey area.
The system operates under the so-called Electronic Conveyance National Law which was amended in February to enforce “interoperability” between the ELNOs. This move supposedly supports a “sustainable competitive market structure for electronic conveyancing”.
Meanwhile, the Australian property owner, who once held his property title deed in his hand, might well be asking how this bureaucratic jiggery pokery affects his lawful property ownership. Are we to accept that our property titles should be confiscated and traded for the benefit of private company owners?
Len Harris also wonders what might happen to the titles in the case of a hostile, stock exchange takeover of one of the ELNO companies. PEXA, before it listed on the Australian Stock Exchange, was subject to a $3.1 billion takeover bid by a consortium called KKR-Domain.
In Queensland the corporate-bureaucratic jiggery pokery continued at another level. On October 1, 2019 the Queensland Land, Explosives and Other Legislative Amendments Act enabled the cancellation of all property title deeds.
The Palaszczuk government then took the Debt Reduction and Savings Act 2021 which they magically turned into a new Act called the Queensland Future Fund (Titles Registry) Act 2021. The stated purpose of this Act is to support the Queensland Future (Debt Retirement) Fund set up under the Queensland Future Fund Act 2020. This Act allows for “the entity to collect and keep fees and other amounts relating to the land registry or water allocations register”.
Harris says they have created a sink fund, which is defined as a fund containing money set aside or saved to pay off a debt or bond. A company that issues debt will need to pay that debt off in the future, and the sinking fund helps to soften the hardship of a large outlay of revenue. He says the Future Fund has already gone offshore to borrow $2 billion.
All these corporate-government machinations in the service of debt raise serious questions about the integrity of the property title system – or what is left of it.
Join Len Harris’ campaign to reverse the theft and destruction of Queensland paper property titles
By TONY MOBILIFONITIS
FORMER One Nation Senator Len Harris is on the road across Queensland for 20 weeks to expose the massive scandal of Queenslanders’ paper property Title Deeds being made void and placed under private corporate control.
In October 2019, under the Land, Explosives and Other Legislation Amendment Act, all Queensland property Title Deeds were changed into electronic form and placed under the control of three private companies – Purcell Partners Pty Ltd (PEXA), Sympli Australia Pty Ltd and Property Exchange Australia (PEXA).
One of the companies, Property Exchange Australia (PEXA), is in the throes of capitalizing on the control of those Title Deeds by either becoming a public company and issuing $1.8 billion worth of shares or in selling outright for $3.8 billion.
Harris says the concern with these corporate entities is that they can be bought and sold at the whim of the owners, or by hostile takeover if listed on the stock exchange. He wonders if the system will become one where property owners pay an annual fee to the companies for a permit to occupy the home. A forerunner of that is Microsoft switching from selling programs to paying an annual access fee.
“The question is, in the long term future, say 10, 20, or 50 years down the track, who will control the computer your land and home ownership is registered in?” Harris says.
For now, Queenslanders’ paper property titles have been seized, digitized and turned into assets for the benefit of few private corporations, their future shareholders or some other corporate entity we know nothing about. It’s akin to some entity taking money out of your bank, parking it and reaping interest without benefit to you, the owner.
Harris is also seeking public support for a judicial review of the covering legislation by a chief judge of the Supreme Court of Queensland, and an application to the Federal Court for directives to reverse and remedy the outrageous and high-handed action.
“The only solution and the best solution for this is to take the Queensland Government to the Federal Court of Australia and have this Act struck down,” Harris says in a video on thesilentmajority.org.au website created for the campaign.
Harris agreed with Cairns News that Queenslanders should take special note of a bizarre World Economic Forum advertisement circulated in 2020: “It’s 2030. You will own nothing. But you will be happy”. It raises the question of whether losing possession and direct control of property title deeds is a step on the way to losing ownership of the property altogether in a global digital maze.
The electronic titles system has also been implemented in Victoria and NSW but with one important exception – the paper titles have not been voided in those states as they have been in Queensland. “The Queensland Government severely reduced our right to have documents that prove ownership of our homes to nothing other than historic artefacts to look at,” Len Harris states in a circular to Queensland business owners.
Some may argue that “it’s just the new electronic titles that have come in. No-one has actually stolen our titles.” But when paper titles have been made void i.e. of no legal standing, you then become entirely reliant for the proof of your ownership on the grace of the private corporation to show it when you ask. In other words, your personal ability to show ownership of your property has been taken out of your hands.
Even now, the document provided upon request from Titles Queensland (formerly the Registrar of Titles Office) acknowledging your name as existing on an electronic title with one of the holding companies, has no legal weight.
Property Exchange Australia is wholly owned by The Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) Lightyear Investments B.V., a subsidiary of North Haven Infrastructure Partners II, a fund managed by Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners (MSIP). They are collectively deciding to either float PEXA on the stock exchange or sell it outright. PEXA currently holds 70% of all electronically lodged conveyancing records in Australia.