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

Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar lands in Melbourne despite tensions

The Turkish Cypriot leader of the illegitimate “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus,” Ersin Tatar landed in Melbourne on Wednesday, May 22

Identity and forgotten history hot topics at 2024 Greek Australian Writer’s Festival

Identity and forgotten history were hot topics at 2024 Greek Australian Writer's Festival. Read the full story here.

In the footsteps of Digenis Akritas: Melbourne exhibition celebrates Hellenic unity

A new Melbourne exhibition fosters a deeper understanding of the shared history and culture of Greeks from Cyprus.

Pericles Moustakas takes over as coach of Apollon FC Youth team

Apollon Football (Public) Ltd has announced the beginning of its collaboration with Greek-Cypriot Australian, Pericles Moustakas.

Economist Sophie Photios estimates 50 percent chance of recession for 2024

Macquarie economist Sophie Photios estimates there is a 50 percent chance of recession this year as the “trap” of high migration unwinds.

You May Also Like

Does Hellenism have a future in Australia? [Part II]

In this second article by Professor Anastasios Tamis, he asks does Hellenism have a future in the nation of Australia?

Greek sprinter Athanasios Ghavelas wins gold, breaks world record at Tokyo Paralympics

Greek sprinter Athanasios Ghavelas has set a world record and won Greece’s first gold medal at the Tokyo Paralympics.

World Pasta Day: Top five Greek pasta dishes

Today we celebrate World Pasta Day! One of the world’s most favourite and versatile foods that is a staple in most households.