Former authorised representative sentenced for breach of banning order imposed by ASIC

 21 June 2022

Former financial advisor, Lawrence Toledo, has been convicted and fined $1500 for breaching an ASIC banning order.

As we have previously commented, Mr Toledo, , was facing criminal charges in the Brisbane Magistrates Court for breaching a banning order, after charges were brought by ASIC.

Mr Toledo subsequently pleaded guilty to three charges of breaching an ASIC banning order, and on 17 June 2022, was convicted and fined $1,500 by the Brisbane Magistrates Court.

Though the penalties imposed for Mr Toledo’s conviction may seem lenient, readers should note that since the Treasury Laws Amendment (Strengthening Corporate and Financial Sector Penalties) Act 2019 (Strengthened Penalties Amendment) commenced on 13 March 2019, existing penalties have been strengthened and new penalties have been introduced with respect to breaches of corporate laws of Australia.

For example, the maximum penalty for breach of an ASIC banning order before the Strengthened Penalties Amendment was 6 months imprisonment or a $5,250 fine, or both. After the Strengthened Penalties Amendment, the maximum penalty for committing a criminal offence of contravening an ASIC banning order is now 5 years imprisonment. There is also now a separate civil penalty regime, where the maximum penalty for individuals is the greater of 5,000 penalty units (currently $11.1 million) or three times the benefit obtained.

We do not know how Mr Toledo would have fared had he committed his offence after the implementation of the Strengthened Penalties Amendment, but it is certain he would have faced greater punishment than he received on 17 June 2022 (based on criminal sentencing principles).  The increased penalties highlighting the seriousness of compliance with ASIC’s banning orders and the need for expert advice on continued business activities if there is a risk they overlap with the ASIC ban

Mackay Chapman

The contents of this article do not constitute legal advice and it is not intended to be a substitute for legal advice and should not be relied upon as such.  It is designed and intended as general information in summary form, current at the time of publication, for general informational purposes only.  You should seek legal advice or other professional advice in relation to any particular legal matters you or your organisation may have.