Former financial adviser charged

A former financial adviser who was banned from providing financial services by ASIC in 2018 has been charged with five counts of dishonest conduct.

Mark Damion Kawecki has been charged for allegedly using false or misleading information in applications for shares in companies undertaking initial public offerings or in the process of relisting on the ASX.

According to ASIC, applications submitted by Kawecki contained false or misleading statements about the beneficial holder of shares and the applicant's address.

Companies are required to meet "minimum spread requirements" under ASX listing rules, which ensure companies have at least 300 "non-affiliated" shareholders with at least $2000 worth of holdings each, before its shares can be quoted and traded on the ASX.

The corporate regulator banned Kawecki from providing financial services for seven years in 2018, and ASIC commissioner Cathie Armour noted Kawecki's attempts to maneuver around the ASX's minimum spread requirements impacted market integrity.

"ASIC considers attempts to satisfy the minimum spread requirement through artificial means as serious misconduct which interferes with the integrity of our markets," Armour said.

When banning Kawecki in June last year, Armour said ASIC would take action against anybody undermining market integrity.

"Attempts to achieve the minimum spread requirement through artificial means is inconsistent with the fair and orderly operation of the market," Armour said at the time.

"ASIC will take action to ban people from providing financial services if they engage in conduct that undermines the integrity of our markets."

Read more: ASICASXMark Damion KaweckiCathie Armour
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