Tasmanian insurance agent banned for fraud

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has announced that a Tasmania-based insurance agent has been permanently banned from providing financial services after being convicted of fraud offences.

ASIC banned Phillip John Kingston of North Hobart following his conviction on two charges of stealing by agent, one charge of stealing and one charge of dishonestly acquiring a financial advantage. The offences occurred between January 2007 and June 2008.

On 20 May 2010, Mr Kingston was sentenced in the Magistrates Court of Tasmania after he pleaded guilty to each charge.

Under the Corporations Act 2001 (the Corporations Act), ASIC can ban a person from providing financial services if the person is convicted of fraud. The offences committed by Mr Kingston constitute 'serious fraud' under the Act.

ASIC made the decision to permanently ban Mr Kingston as it had reason to believe he is not a person of good fame and character. Under such circumstances, the Corporations Act requires the banning to be permanent.

Mr Kingston's banning reinforces ASIC's focus on maintaining public confidence in the financial services industry.

At the time the offences were committed, Mr Kingston was an authorised representative of Choice Future Planning Pty Ltd. Mr Kingston subsequently became an authorised representative for Combined Insurance and was so at the time of the court proceedings.

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