02Dec

The Financial Conduct Authority has banned three financial advisers from working in any role in financial services after they were convicted of various serious offences that were not directly related to their day-to-day work.

The first individual – who held the CF1 (Director), CF3 (CEO), CF10 (Compliance), CF11 (Money Laundering) and CF30 (Adviser) controlled functions at his firm – was convicted of offences relating to “making, possession and distribution of indecent images of children”. In total, he pleaded guilty to 16 offences. He was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment, was ordered to sign the sex offenders’ register and is now included in the list of individuals barred from working with children or vulnerable adults.

The second individual – who has in the past been approved to carry out the CF1, CF10, CF11 and CF30 functions – was found guilty by a jury of a voyeurism offence. He was sentenced to nine months’ imprisonment, suspended for 18 months; required to complete 100 hours of unpaid work and 25 days of rehabilitation activity; and required to sign the sex offenders’ register.

The third individual – who has again been engaged in CF1, CF10, CF11 and CF30 roles at various stages of his career – was convicted of sexual assault, as well as an offence of engaging in controlling and coercive behaviour, after being found guilty by a jury. He was sentenced to seven years’ imprisonment and required to sign the sex offenders’ register.

Normally, when one thinks of FCA enforcement action, it concerns misdemeanours directly related to the individual or the firm’s core business activities, non FCA compliance, and breaches of the rules and/or principles in the Handbook. These cases illustrate just how far-reaching the powers available to the regulator are. In each case, the FCA believes that their criminal conduct outside of work is sufficient evidence to be satisfied that they fail the ‘fit and proper’ test which must be passed by everyone working in financial services.

These latest actions also call to mind a case from 2014, when a hedge fund manager was banned from working in the industry after he repeatedly failed to pay the correct train fare when commuting to work.

Mark Steward, Executive Director of Enforcement and Market Oversight at the FCA, said:

“The FCA expects high standards of character, probity and fitness and properness from those who operate in the financial services industry and will take action to ensure these standards are maintained.”

Scott Robert assist firms with FCA authorisation.

The information shown in this article was correct at the time of publication. Articles are not routinely reviewed and as such are not updated. Please be aware of the facts, circumstances or legal position may change after publication of the article