The Eastern Magistrates’ Court today convicted Mr Simon Chan Ying Ming, former officer of Wonderful Wealth Group Limited (WWGL), of holding out as carrying on a business of dealing in futures contracts and asset management without a licence in a criminal prosecution brought by the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) (Notes 1 to 3).
Chan, who pleaded guilty to all four charges, was fined $20,000 and ordered to pay the SFC’s investigation costs.
The SFC alleged that between July and September 2012, Chan had represented to two investors that WWGL operated a business of trading in futures contracts and options, and solicited them to invest in a WWGL-operated investment scheme which guaranteed a monthly rate of return of 5% in three months’ time.
Chan told them WWGL would use their funds to trade futures contracts and options in WWGL’s trading accounts. The two investors invested a total sum of $850,000 in the investment scheme and they suffered losses of around $710,000.
The SFC also alleged that Chan had aided, abetted, counselled, procured, induced WWGL to hold itself out to the investors as carrying on a business of dealing in futures contracts and asset management or that the offence by WWGL was committed with the consent, connivance of or was attributable to recklessness of Chan (Notes 4 & 5).
The SFC reminds investors to check the SFC’s Public Register of Licensed Persons and Registered Institutions on the SFC website (www.sfc.hk) before investing to ensure that the people who provide dealing services in futures contracts and asset management are properly licensed.
- WWGL was dissolved in November 2017.
- Dealing in futures contracts and asset management are regulated activities under the Securities and Futures Ordinance (SFO). Under section 114(1)(b) of the SFO, it is an offence to hold oneself out as carrying on a business in a regulated activity without a licence from the SFC.
- Chan and WWGL have never been licensed with the SFC in any capacity or in relation to any regulated activity.
- Under section 390 of the SFO, where the commission of an offence under the SFO by a corporation is proved to have been aided, abetted, counselled, procured or induced by, or committed with the consent or connivance of, or attributable to any recklessness on the part of, any officer of the corporation, or any person who was purporting to act in any such capacity, that person, as well as the corporation, is guilty of the offence.
- On 4 June 2020, the former sole director and shareholder of WWGL was convicted of the same offences. For details, please see press release dated 4 June 2020. The case against Chan was adjourned until today for plea taking.