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FSA Fines Former CSFP Boss For Role In Japanese Tax Fraud

by Robin Pilgrim,, London

17 November 2003

The UK's Financial Services Authority (FSA) announced on Thursday that it has fined former Credit Suisse Financial Products (now Credit Suisse First Boston International) chief executive, Christopher Goekjian £150,000, and banned two other members of the firm's senior management team, Robert Stevens and Antony Blunden from working within the finance industry, over their roles in an attempt to mislead the Japanese tax authorities in the mid- to late 1990s.

The FSA revealed that the fine imposed on Mr Goekjian, the highest penalty ever imposed by the regulator on an individual, was levied because between 1996 and 1997, the former CEO failed to:

"Properly supervise and monitor the activities of staff to whom he had delegated responsibility for CSFP's management of an audit by the Japanese tax authority (NTA); pick up, follow up and investigate warning signals about CSFP's misconduct; and take appropriate, swift and decisive action to stop and/or prevent and/or remedy CSFP's conduct."

Former head of financial control, Robert Stevens was prohibited from holding any role which requires FSA approval as a result of his attempts to mislead the National Tax Administration Agency, and CSFP compliance officer, Antony Blunden was prohibited from holding any compliance function in the future over his failure to take remedial action when anomalies with regard to the tax situation of CSFP's Tokyo branch came to his attention.

In a statement, the FSA's director of enforcement, Andrew Procter announced that:

"This is an example of the FSA holding the senior management of a global company to account. The penalty of banning an individual is the most serious action available to the FSA and the fine ranks amongst the highest ever imposed by a UK regulator on an individual for this type of breach."

He continued:

"We have taken this action because we expect people in senior positions in regulated firms to set high standards and lead by example. In cases where they fail to do so or act in contravention of those standards, such as clearly occurred here, we will not allow these people to carry on without regulatory sanction."

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