A former banker has been charged over allegedly deleting his WhatsApp messages in an insider dealing investigation, in the first case of its kind brought by the Financial Conduct Authority.
On Friday (6 September) Konstantin Vishnyak, 41, appeared at Westminster Magistrates’ Court and pleaded not guilty to one count of destroying documents which he knew or suspected were or would be relevant to an investigation.
According to a statement published by the FCA Mr Vishnyak will now appear at Southwark Crown Court next month and has been granted bail until the next hearing.
This is the first prosecution brought by the UK's financial regulator in relation to a destruction of documents offence under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000, which specifies a person is guilty of an offence if he or she knows an investigation is being or is likely to be conducted and destroys any relevant documents.
This applies if a person "falsifies, conceals, destroys or otherwise disposes of a document which he knows or suspects is or would be relevant to such an investigation", unless they show no intention of concealing facts disclosed by the documents from the investigator.
It is alleged Mr Vishnyak was under investigation by the FCA for suspected insider dealing offences and that he deleted the WhatsApp application on his mobile phone after he was required to provide it as part of the investigation.
According to his Linkedin profile Mr Vishnyak worked at VTB Capital between 2008 and 2016 and is now head of business development at Queen Street Finance.
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