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FSA fines Northern Ireland mortgage firm £35,000

The FSA has fined a Northern Ireland mortgage firm £35,000 and banned one of its partners for failures which led to fraudulent applications.

James Ian Shanks, a former partner and mortgage adviser at County Down mortgage intermediary Case Funding Centre, was banned for recklessly submitting false information to lenders.

The FSA found CFC did not have adequate systems and controls to counter the risk of customers and staff submitting mortgage applications based on false income and employment information. It also found that advisers did little more than superficial “sense checks” on mortgage applicants’ income and employment details.

It says these failings, combined with CFC’s historically weak recruitment process, led the regulator to conclude that the firm had exposed itself to the risk of being used to facilitate financial crime. Shanks was shown to have submitted mortgage applications from CFC’s advisers containing income information that he failed to verify against the firm’s records, despite being aware that such a check was possible
FSA director of enforcement and financial crime division Margaret Cole says: “Both Case Funding Centre and Shanks fell short of the standards we exp- ect and are being punished for their failings.”

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