The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has 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.
The regulator has also withdrawn Whittington’s approvals to perform controlled functions at Savesure Limited, an insurance intermediary of which he was a shareholder.
Between March 2012 and December 2013, Whittington deliberately caused Savesure to misappropriate insurance premiums paid to Savesure by its clients for insurance, by transferring more money from Savesure’s 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 Savesure’s business expenses however some of the money was used to repay funds Whittington paid into Savesure from his personal finances or from funds raised through creditors.
The FCA said that Whittington knew that Savesure was not entitled to all of the money being transferred and nevertheless made the transfers as required to pay Savesure’s expenses.
The regulaotr found that Whittington failed to act with honesty and integrity by knowingly causing Savesure to misappropriate insurance premiums paid to Savesure by its clients.
Mr Whittington agreed to settle at an early stage of the FCA’s investigation and therefore qualified for a 30% (stage 1) discount.
In January 2014 Whittington informed the FCA that Savesure had ceased trading and in July 2014 Savesure entered voluntary liquidation.