The Financial Conduct Authority today (10 September) fined Ralph Whittington £42,111 and banned him from performing any function in relation to regulated activity for failing to act with integrity in carrying out his controlled functions.
They also withdrew his approvals to perform controlled functions at Savesure Limited, the insurance intermediary of which he was a shareholder.
In January 2014 Mr Whittington informed the FCA that Savesure had ceased trading and in July that year the firm entered voluntary liquidation.
Between March 2012 and December 2013, the FCA ruled he deliberately caused Savesure to misappropriate insurance premiums paid from clients for insurance, by transferring more money from its client premium bank account to its business account than Savesure was entitled to receive as commission.
The misappropriated insurance premiums were primarily used to fund business expenses, however some of the money was used to repay funds Mr Whittington paid into the firm from his personal finances, or from funds raised through creditors.
The FCA stated that Mr Whittington knew the firm was not entitled to all of the money being transferred and nevertheless made the transfers as required to pay Savesure’s expenses.
It found that Mr Whittington failed to act with honesty and integrity by knowingly misappropriating insurance premiums paid by its clients.
He agreed to settle at an early stage of the investigation and therefore qualified for a 30 per cent stage one discount.