Business Times

SEC charges offenders, warns there’ll be more

By Duruthu Edirimuni Chandrasekera

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on the back of charging five SMB Leasing staffers for insider dealing this week, aims to get more offenders before the year is out. “During the past two months the SEC has taken 13 offenders to task and they have identified more perpetrators,” an SEC source told the Business Times. He said that all the offences identified are of a manipulative nature.

He added that the regulator will institute action against most of them before the year ends. “We are acting on more complaints and have made headway into other investigations as well,” he added.
The SEC compounded Environmental Resource Investments Plc and three of its directors, while warning two more early last month and has also charged an investment advisor for share price pushing. The source said that he has applied to the SEC to compound this offence.

"The SEC has agreed to compound this offence for the maximum amount of Rs 3.5 million and his broking licence will be suspended for nine months," he explained. The Business Times on 11 September reported that the SEC is gearing to institute action against stockbrokers pertaining to malpractices and that this has come as a result of the probes carried out by the SEC during the past year.

The SEC in a statement on Tuesday said that it has sent notices of action to the staffers at SMB Leasing and that the evidence elicited during the course of this investigation suggested that they were privy to the unpublished price sensitive information ertaining to the Rights Issue of shares with attached warrants or at least regarding a new issue of shares relating to SMB at the time they bought shares through their respective securities accounts.

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