FSA bans two Ucis advisers
The FSA has prohibited two directors of MNFA for their involvement in the marketing and promotion of an unregulated collective investment scheme called the “environmentally beneficial plant scheme”.
Money Marketing revealed this week that Richard Rhys, one of the the directors banned by the FSA, is now working at a claims management company that handles Ucis misselling claims.
MNFA compliance director Anthony Adams has been banned from performing any significant influence function other than as or through an appointed representative.
Rhys marketed and promoted the scheme without conducting the proper due diligence. As a result, Rhys did not believe that the scheme was Ucis and so did not comply with Ucis promotion rules. The FSA says the scheme was not described by the provider as a Ucis.
The FSA says Adams failed to understand the rules around Ucis, while Rhys incompetently made misleading statements to investors and failed to take any steps to ensure the suitability of advice to customers.
FSA head of retail enforcement Bill Sillett says: “The risk of consumer detriment arising from the sale of Ucis has been well documented by the FSA over the last few years. Other advisers that sell, or are considering selling, Ucis may consider it advisable to re-read that information and the details of this case to ensure they are compliant with the relevant rules.
“This particular case emphasises the need for authorised firms and approved persons to ensure they carry out appropriate due diligence on an investment scheme which, although not described as a Ucis in the promotional material, may in fact be one.”
MNFA Limited was liquidated in August 2011.
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