FCA Recovers £1.6 Million from Argento to Compensate Scheme Investors

Argento Wealth Ltd and Daniel Willis agreed to pay £1.6 million to the FCA to facilitate the distribution of funds to investors impacted by the alleged unlawful schemes.

Key Insights

  • The FCA secured a £1.6 million settlement from Argento Wealth Ltd (AWL) and its director Daniel Willis over alleged unlawful investment schemes.
  • AWL and Willis allegedly took £2.8 million in deposits under loan agreements/unauthorized schemes and improperly arranged $9 million in investments.
  • While not admitting liability, AWL and Willis agreed to pay to facilitate the eventual distribution of funds to investors.

LONDON (MarketsXplora) – Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has won court approval to obtain £1.6 million ($2 million) from Argento Wealth Ltd (AWL) and its sole director Daniel Willis, resolving civil proceedings against the firm for promoting alleged unlawful investment schemes.

The High Court approved a consent order that requires AWL and Willis to hand over the funds, with the intention that the money will be distributed to investors caught up in the schemes under scrutiny.

The settlement marks another step forward in the FCA’s efforts to recover money on behalf of victims ensnared by the firm’s alleged unauthorised activities, which included taking around £2.8 million as deposits under purported loan agreements or as part of an unlawful collective investment scheme.

AWL and Willis also allegedly arranged around $9 million worth of investments in EMB Fund Limited, breaching restrictions on financial promotions, according to the FCA.

The regulator had previously secured asset freezing orders against AWL and Willis as it commenced civil proceedings to recover funds linked to their alleged unlawful conduct. The case began on June 1, 2022.

While neither AWL nor Willis have admitted liability in relation to the FCA’s allegations, they have agreed to pay the £1.6 million sum under the consent order to facilitate the eventual distribution of funds to investors.

Additional court hearings will be needed to determine how and to whom the secured funds will ultimately be disbursed, a process that could take a significant amount of time.

The FCA said the negotiated settlement was intended to prevent all of AWL and Willis’s remaining assets from being depleted through ongoing legal fees and living costs, thereby safeguarding at least some investor money.

“Without the settlement, there would have been a significant risk of the remaining investor money being used to fund legal fees, leaving nothing for investors. Despite the settlement, investors will suffer very significant losses,” the regulator stated.

The case underscores the FCA’s continuing crackdown on unauthorised investment schemes and efforts to recover funds on behalf of victims of alleged financial misconduct.

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