UK FCA bans and fines ex-Shard James Lewis £120k

Rick Steves

The regulatory agency claims that, in both instances, James Lewis knew the information he provided would be used to produce the clients’ annual accounts, and that’s why he misstated.

The Financial Conduct Authority has banned James Lewis, the former CEO of Shard Capital Partner, for putting investors at risk and fined him £120,300.

The fine and ban followed two separate instances of providing incorrect information about clients’ cash purportedly held by Shard, thus putting the market and investors at risk, according to the UK regulator.

“It is right that he won’t be allowed to work in regulated financial services again”

The financial watchdog stated that, between June 2015 and May 2017, James Lewis told auditors that Shard held hundreds of millions in cash for a particular client, but later it was found that these sums were debts owed by another client in the same group.

Additionally, between June and July 2021, Lewis provided misleading information to a further client purporting that Shard held substantial sums on its behalf. In this case, that client’s entire cash balance had previously been transferred out of its account, the FCA stated.

The regulatory agency claims that, in both instances, James Lewis knew the information he provided would be used to produce the clients’ annual accounts, and that’s why he misstated. Additionally, as the FCA was considering the first of these instances, Shard became aware of the second and notified the regulator of the issue in September 2023. Subsequently, Lewis also reported his conduct to the FCA.

Steve Smart, joint Executive Director of Enforcement and Market Oversight, said: “Mr Lewis fell woefully short of the high standards of skill, care, and integrity we expect of all those who lead financial firms. Investors depend on accurate information, and Mr Lewis’ actions put investors at significant risk of losses. It is right that he won’t be allowed to work in regulated financial services again.”

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