Financial Conduct Authority  

FCA bans adviser who stole client fees

FCA bans adviser who stole client fees
 

The Financial Conduct Authority has ruled former adviser Luke Andrew Durrant is “not fit and proper” to perform any regulated activities after he stole money from both his employer and clients.

Durrant was convicted of two counts of fraud by abuse of his position back in February 2020, before being sentenced to four years in prison by Norfolk Magistrates Court.

According to the court, Durrant had set up a “hidden bank account” in the name of Lifetime Financial Solution Limited - the appointed representative firm he worked at between January 2012 to November 2018.

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This saw Durrant divert cheques for client fees which were supposed to go to his employer, also known as Sophex Ltd, into his own business or personal account, the court heard.

Additionally, Durrant was convicted of stealing money from various clients - many of which were elderly and in a “vulnerable position” - who had trusted him and paid money into that account. 

Between May 2016 and November 2018, the court determined that Durrant stole in the region of £300,000 from his victims.

When Durrant was sentenced, the Judge said he had abused his position of power, trust and responsibility, describing Durrant’s offending as having set up a “dishonest and sophisticated scheme”.

In an FCA final notice published last week (September 22), the regulator added: “His convictions demonstrate a clear and serious lack of honesty and integrity such that he is not fit and proper to perform regulated activities.”

ruby.hinchliffe@ft.com