Hong Kong’s securities regulator has banned a former employee of Wocom Securities from the industry for life for misappropriating client monies, forging client signatures and conducting unauthorised transactions in client accounts. 

The action follows a Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) investigation, which found that between 2010 and 2012 Chow Chi-Keung sought to conceal his trading losses in client accounts by:

  • forging client signatures on 13 Wocom payment instruction forms to facilitate the withdrawal or transfer of funds from nine client accounts to his or his wife’s personal accounts or other accounts maintained at Wocom (the total sum in the payment instruction forms amounted to at least HK$2.5 million ($320,000)); and
  • sold securities in five client accounts without their authorisation and transferred the sale proceeds to other client accounts.

In deciding the penalty, the SFC took into account that Chow’s conduct was gravely dishonest and seriously jeopardised the interests of Wocom’s clients and the integrity of the market. 

Chow was licensed as a representative to conduct type 1 (dealing in securities) and type 2 (dealing in futures contracts) activities and was accredited to Wocom Securities from January 10, 2000 to December 5, 2012. He is currently not licensed by the SFC.              

Wocom has reported Chow’s conduct to the police.