Premier FX were an international foreign currency exchange firm operating a Ponzi style scam based on push payment fraud for 8 years while registered by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority as a Payments Services Institution and being “robustly and rigorously verified” under the FCA’s due legal authorisation process and annually monitored. The firm was already operating fraudulently and unsafely and indeed failed all conditions, bar one, to be a safe payments institution when first authorised by the FCA in 2011. PFX was then reauthorised in 2018 under the new stricter international payment service rules (PSD2, 2017) eight weeks before they collapsed stealing clients’ money worth £12m.
The victims followed the FCA’s ScamSmart advice and used a British registered FCA Payments Institution and still had their money stolen.
When not meeting with the FCA, and other parties to negotiate for money to be returned Pauline is also
Co-founder and partner in an aerospace firm providing management and technical services to the aerospace and communications industry.
Pauline welcomes the opportunity to assist the Transparency Task Force in making financial services easier to understand and regulate safely. “The consumer is prey to extensive bad practice in the financial services sector and this is accepted, and sadly facilitated by default by the Treasury, FCA and Banks. Despite the evidence of severe economic harm to the public due to failings by the banks and regulator to follow due legal statutory processes, the calls for change in policy and practice have been dangerously underwhelming and the banks seem to look for loopholes rather than act with gravitas and integrity on behalf of the consumer”
Pauline believes the UK’s financial laws and in particular the Financial Services and Markets Act (FSMA) needs to be tightened as banking culture is allowing key principles to be evaded. The accountability & liability of the Regulator needs to be changed as it is currently unenforceable which allows the Regulator to fail with impunity. The processes of adequately protecting the consumer under the FSMA and the Payment Service Regulations need to be legally defined and enforced. The key question is by whom and will it be allowed to be enforced?