Markus Jooste’s death will not affect investigations – watchdog

The Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) has confirmed that it will recover the fine imposed on former Steinhoff boss Markus Jooste from his estate.

This comes after Jooste shot and killed himself on Thursday.

The FSCA had imposed a fine of R475 million on Jooste on Wednesday after he submitted false, misleading, and deceptive statements.

These statements, spanning the 2014–2017 financial years, were found to be in direct contravention of Sections 81(1)(a) and (b) of the Financial Markets Act (FMA) 2012.

R10m to reimburse the FSCA

The penalty imposed comprises not only the substantial sum of R475-million but also a contribution of R10-million to reimburse the FSCA for investigation costs.

Additionally, an interest rate of 11.75% has been applied to any outstanding portion of the penalty until its full settlement.

“In arriving at the amount of the administrative penalty, the FSCA considered, among other factors, the need to deter similar behaviour in the market; the amounts of the losses experienced by the market; Mr Jooste’s level of cooperation during the investigation; the nature, duration, extent and seriousness of the contraventions; the extent of any financial or commercial benefit to Mr Jooste; previous contraventions of financial sector laws [insider trading and the contravention of the JSE’s listing requirements]; the effect of Mr Jooste’s conduct on the financial system and financial stability; the effect of the proposed penalty on financial stability; the extent to which the conduct was deliberate or reckless; and Mr Jooste’s submissions regarding the merits of the case against him, including his submissions regarding an appropriate penalty,” said the FSCA this week.

On Friday, the financial watchdog confirmed Jooste’s death and clarified that it would not impact the ongoing investigations.

The authority added that although Jooste has died, the financial watchdog can still recover the money from his estate.

Legally entitled to recover the penalty

“As the penalty on the late Mr Jooste in his personal capacity was already imposed at the time of his death, his passing does not impact the penalty,” it stated.

“The FSCA is legally entitled to recover the penalty from the estate of the late Mr Jooste.

“Whether the authority will claim against the estate will be decided at the appropriate time, taking into account all the relevant circumstances.”

Meanwhile, the investigations will continue, the FSCA confirmed.

“The findings relating to Mr Jooste and Mr Schreiber were made as part of an ongoing
investigation by the FSCA.

“The authority is continuing with further investigations into similar contraventions of Section 81(1)(a) and (b) of the FMA by other individuals.”

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