Societe Generale Securities Australia (SGSA) has been charged with breaching client money obligations by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).
On 17 March, SGSA appeared in the Downing Centre Local Court in Sydney on criminal charges, which included two counts of failing to pay client money into segregated authorised bank accounts and two counts of failing to comply with requirements relating to a client money bank account.
ASIC alleged between December, 2014 and September, 2018, SGSA failed to comply with client money obligations, in contravention of criminal offence provisions under sections 993B(1) and 993C(1) of the Corporations Act 2001.
Client money provisions protected the interests of clients of Australian financial services licensees (AFSL) by separating client money from money belonging to licensees.
ASIC said breaching this provision was serious misconduct that risked undermining investor confidence.
The maximum penalty for each charge was 250 penalty units, which would be approximately $45,000.
The Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions was prosecuting the matter, which had been adjourned for a Case Management Hearing on 12 May, 2020.