The rock cracks down on financial scandals

LAST UPDATED: 10 Jun, 2010 @ 23:37
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The rock cracks down on financial scandals

GIBRALTAR government officials have unveiled a new bill to crack down on ‘Marrache’ style financial scandals.

Gaps in the rock’s financial regulations became apparent in the wake of the peninsular’s recent banking outrage.

The new act will give authorities the power to appoint administrators for law and financial services firms.

“The Government will be bringing legislative proposals to plug some of the lacunae that have become apparent in our legislation.”

Emergency measures passed after the arrest of Solomon and Benjamin Marrache – founding partners of Marrache & Co – will now be codified.

“The Government will be bringing legislative proposals to plug some of the lacunae that have become apparent in our legislation, affecting not just financial services activity but indeed elements of the regulation of the legal profession as well,” said Chief minister Peter Caruana.

The problems in the rock’s financial regulation came to light when the Financial Services Commission suspended the licenses of several Marrache-linked fiduciary companies.

At the time, there were no provisions to allow an administrator to look after client affairs between the suspension and liquidation of companies.

Now, the new laws will provide the regulator with the power to fast-track the appointment of an administrator, suspend directors and run the business’ affairs.

Minister Caruana added that further reform will still be likely, but these changes must not be rushed.

The Marrache brothers were arrested on suspicion of false accounting.

Although they were granted bail, they were again apprehended following further allegations and refused bail.

The pair remain in custody.

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