Securities Fraud

Sri Lankan Police forming a human chain in parliament to protect the Speaker and enable a vote.

Sep 14, 2011 (LBO) – Sri Lanka should increase fines for securities fraud because trading volumes and potential for profit is much higher than when the fines were originally set, a lawmaker has said. Harsha de Silva, a member of Sri Lanka’s opposition United National Party, said a 10 million rupee fine charged on Environmental Resources Investments and key officials by the Securities and Exchange Commission was inadequate.

ERI, controlled by a foreign entity called Lionhart Investments and which had claimed to own platinum mining stock and was swapping assets among related units, was penalized by the SEC for delaying disclosure.

Larger Scale

De Silva said when Sri Lanka’s securities law was amended in 2003, the annual turnover was 73 billion rupees and daily average turnover was 307 million rupees. By 2010 annual turnover was 570 billion rupees and daily turnover was 2,400 million rupees.

“It is not uncommon for ˜highly respected’ corrupt individuals to make tens of millions in profits in just one day of trading on insider-information or engaging in other activities contravening the SEC Act,” de Silva said in a statement.

“The sad irony is that while it is well kn