Most Wanted: Hong Kong’s SFC seeks information from the public about “persons of interest”

Maria Nikolova

A new webpage on the SFC website aims to encourage the public to submit information about “persons of interest” and people subject to arrest warrants.

Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) has redesigned its website adding new pages, which aim to encourage the public to report fraud and to provide information about people the Hong Kong authorities are looking for.

Members of the public can now fill in an online form to report information via a new “Reporting corporate fraud and market misconduct” page. The regulator expects reports about activities that pose threats to the Hong Kong markets. To tackle these threats efficiently, the SFC appreciates credible, timely and actionable intelligence about the following activities:

  • Listed company fraud or misconduct;
  • Insider dealing;
  • False trading;
  • Stock market manipulation;
  • Price rigging;
  • Disclosure of false or misleading information inducing transactions.

In addition, there is a new website section named “Have you seen these people?”, which provides more details about key suspects the SFC is trying to locate as well as an online form which can be used to submit information about the whereabouts of these individuals.

Where the reported information points to evidence outside Hong Kong, the SFC may seek investigative or other assistance from its regulatory counterparts in other jurisdictions. Reports may be made anonymously. However, members of the public who provide information are encouraged to provide contact information so the SFC may follow up.

The list of people subject to arrest warrants includes four individuals charged with crimes such as insider dealing and market manipulation.

SFC’s list of people subject to arrest warrants

The list of persons of interest includes the names of six individuals. The SFC says it is trying to contact these people who it believes have information relevant to a current inquiry. The inquiries related to fraud and unlicensed activities.

In terms of enforcement, the latest quarterly report available – for the three-month period from April to June 2018, says that the SFC disciplined five licensed corporations and three representatives, resulting in total fines of $83.5 million. Citigroup Global Markets Asia Limited was reprimanded and fined $57 million for failings in its sponsor work on the listing application of Real Gold Mining Limited.

With regard to market surveillance, the SFC, made 2,152 requests for trading and account records from intermediaries triggered by untoward price and turnover movements.

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