Westpac fraud: Sydney tycoon Bill Papas seen in Greece following fraud investigation


Sydney business tycoon Basile Papadimitrou, also known as Bill Papas, who is in the centre of fraud allegations by Westpac and French bank Societe Generale has allegedly fled to Greece, according to The Greek Herald’s sources.

Papas, who has been caught up in an alleged fraud with his business, Forum Finance, involving fake invoices and forged signatures that could cost the bank more than $290 million, was last seen in mid-June and there have been reports that he has ‘vanished’ or was ‘in a Perth Hospital’. 

Mr Papas was known to the community as the, now former, president of Sydney Olympic Football Club, one of the oldest and most prominent members of the professional National Premier League and since October an investor in Greek club Xanthi FC.

The Greek Herald understands that Mr Papas was recently seen in Thessaloniki, Greece and “is soon expected to make public announcements regarding Xanthi FC.”

With a post on social media, Sydney Olympic FC confirmed late on Friday that Mr Papas had resigned from the board “effective immediately” and that it appreciated the commitment and contribution of Mr Papas during his tenure.

The details of the financial scandal

Mr Papas’ business Forum Finance, which started in 2011, offers arranged lease financing from banks to its clients for office equipment, computers and software.

The banks then pay the funds to an entity, subsequently receiving regular lease payments.

Forum Finance clients included Findex, HWL Ebsworth, the Cerebral Palsy Alliance, Smart Group, and Channel Seven-owned WesTrac.

Westpac discovered the alleged fraud leading to an investigation when Westrac, applied for finance for office products with the bank in early June.

The bank discovered it already provided financing for Westrac through Forum Finance.

WesTrac confirmed funds were in fact accessed through a Forum Finance loan for equipment worth about $9 million under its name, yet had no record of obtaining the funds.

Further investigations undertaken by Westpac into six more loan contracts financed by the bank allegedly showed the assets financed did not exist, with just one of the advances for equipment amounting to $211 million.

When Westpac questioned Mr Papas, he failed to attend a meeting to discuss the allegations on 15 June and according to the bank, has ‘since that time not been contactable or seen’.




By subscribing you accept our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.


Latest News

Historic link between Battle of Crete and ANZACs a focus of Sydney commemorations

The historic link between the Battle of Crete and the ANZAC forces were a key focus of commemorations in Sydney.

Multicultural media’s vital role in public interest journalism a key message at Sydney event

Multicultural media's vital role in public interest journalism was a key message at a Sydney event by IMMA.

‘Into the Moonlit Village’ echoes of Battle of Crete and Minoan myth

The story behind ‘Into the Moonlit Village’ is as captivating as the work itself. We found out more to mark the Battle of Crete.

Generations of Pontians remember their roots at genocide commemoration in Melbourne

Melbourne's Pontian community commemorated the Greek Genocide on Sunday, May 19, as part of a series of events. Read more here.

Australian Hellenic Medical Charity raises $30,000 for Nicosia hospital

The Australian Hellenic Medical Charity raised $30,000 for the Paediatric Clinic at Makarios III Hospital in Nicosia, Cyprus.

You May Also Like

Antipodean Palette 2020 ‘In Isolation’ showcased through new virtual gallery

The Antipodean Palette responded to the COVID-19 pandemic by creating a virtual gallery for art lovers to witness this years 'In Isolation' artists.

Dekapentavgoustos: August 15 is a landmark of religious and cultural Greek life

How historic monasteries throughout Greece honor Dekapentavgoustos. Read more.

‘Want to work closely with them’: NSW Labor Leader’s election pitch to Greek Australians

NSW Labor Leader Chris Minns MP gives his pitch to the Greek Australian community ahead of the state election in March.