The Central Bank has today published a Prohibition Notice prohibiting Mr. Juerg von Geitz from performing any controlled function in all regulated financial service providers for a period of ten years from 5 July 2019.
Mr. von Geitz was an Executive Director of The Mortgage Department Limited, which was authorised as a mortgage intermediary pursuant to the Consumer Credit Act 1995 (as amended). Mr. von Geitz’s prohibition arose from the provision of misleading answers to the Central Bank when he made an application for a pre-approval controlled function (PCF) position in The Mortgage Department Limited. Mr. von Geitz also failed to cooperate with the investigation subsequently conducted by the Central Bank. The prohibition imposed reflects the seriousness with which the Central Bank views Mr. von Geitz’s conduct.
Seana Cunningham, Director of Enforcement and Anti-Money Laundering said: “The Central Bank’s Fitness and Probity Regime seeks to ensure that regulated firms and individuals who work in these firms are committed to high standards of competence, integrity and honesty and are held to account when they fall below these standards. The Central Bank acts as gatekeeper to certain senior roles called “pre-approval controlled functions” and may assess the fitness and probity of individuals proposed for these roles through the gatekeeper process. Individuals may not be appointed to these roles without the prior written approval of the Central Bank.
“The Central Bank requires all applicants to engage fully and with absolute candour and honesty throughout the gatekeeper process so that we can conduct a proper assessment. Where we find that individuals have provided false and/or misleading information to the Central Bank we will investigate pursuant to our statutory powers.
“We would take this opportunity to remind those who hold controlled functions of the positive obligation on them to cooperate with Central Bank investigations, whether under the Fitness and Probity Regime, or our other enforcement processes.”
- The Prohibition Notice was effective from 5 July 2019. This is the eighth prohibition notice since the commencement of the Fitness and Probity Regime and the third that the Central Bank has published in full.
- The Fitness and Probity Regime was introduced by the Central Bank under the Central Bank Reform Act 2010 to ensure that regulated firms and individuals who work in these firms are committed to high standards of competence, integrity and honesty and are held to account when they fall below these standards.
- The Central Bank acts as a gatekeeper to certain senior roles called “pre-approval controlled functions” or “PCFs” and it may assess the fitness and probity of the individuals proposed for these roles. Firms may not appoint individuals to these roles without the Central Bank’s approval in writing. We may also investigate individuals in key roles if we suspect their fitness and probity to perform their role, and we may prohibit them following such investigation, if appropriate.
- The Fitness and Probity regime also imposes significant obligations on Firms and a letter sent to the CEOs of all regulated firms in April 2019 reminded firms of their obligations. A copy of this letter can be found here.
- Further detail on the Fitness and Probity Regime, including the Fitness and Probity Standards, can be found here.