Financial Markets Authority v Morgan DeVere Corporate Finance Ltd [2019] NZDC 10646

Published 10 June 2020

Sentencing — holding out that in business of providing financial service while unregistered — wilfully ignoring responsibilities to be registered — R v Robinson [2015] NZHC 2641 — Serious Fraud Office & Anor v Ross DC Wellington CRI-2013-085-007462, 15 November 2013 — Financial Service Providers (Registration and Dispute Resolution) Act 2008, ss 2A & 12(1). The defendant appeared for sentencing after being found guilty on two charges of providing financial services while failing to be registered under the Financial Service Providers (Registration and Dispute Resolution) Act. Each offence carried a maximum penalty of $300,000. The defendant received a number of clear warnings from the Financial Markets Authority over about a year, but did not comply with the Authority's directions. The Court rejected the defendant's arguments that this was a "bumbling" error, considering that in fact the defendant had wilfully ignored its responsibilities. The Court set a start point for fine of $50,000, and reduced this to $40,000 to reflect the defendant's absence of previous offences and the fact that its offending seemed to have caused no actual loss to any party. Judgment Date: 31 May 2019.