FCA bans mortgage adviser

Sam Cordon

June 5, 2013

Christopher John Riches, who operated out of Hornchurch, has been fined £63,000 and prohibited from working in regulated financial services.

In December 2009 the FCA discovered that Riches did not have professional indemnity insurance cover – a requirement for all authorised firms and in January 2010, after discussion with the FCA, Riches agreed to stop performing regulated activities and had his regulatory permission removed.

However between May 2010 and August 2011 Riches arranged at least 97 mortgage transactions and earned approximately £40,000 in fees that he would not have earned if he had complied with the removal of his permission.

Bill Sillett, the FCA’s head of retail enforcement, said: “This case highlights the importance of being honest with the regulator.

“Because of Riches’ lack of honesty and integrity, and the inherent risk he poses to consumers and confidence in the financial system, we are banning him from performing any regulated activity.”

Riches provided verifiable evidence that a penalty above £63,000 would cause him serious financial hardship. Were this not the case the FCA would have imposed on him a penalty of £139,581.77 plus interest.

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