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The AFM imposes an administrative fine on Briljant Advies BV for failing to guarantee expert services

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On 16 May 2011, the Netherlands Authority for the Financial Markets (AFM) imposed an administrative fine of €31,500 on Briljant Advies BV (Briljant), with its registered office in Enschede. By decision subject to objection dated 17 November 2011, the AFM mitigated this fine to €500. The fine was imposed because Briljant failed to establish the expertise of its employees and that of other natural persons that are involved in providing financial services to consumers under its responsibility.

During the period of 1 January 2010 to 30 August 2010, only the person actually in charge of Briljant held the relevant diploma for brokering mortgage loans, while it has not been demonstrated that this de facto manager was involved in the advice that was provided by other employees of Briljant. This means that Briljant violated Article 4:34, second paragraph, of the Financial Supervision Act (Wft). This violation is all the more attributable to Briljant, because the AFM already pointed out the lack of any visible control activities of the de facto manager in June 2008.

According to the Wft, a financial service provider has to ensure that its employees who are directly involved in providing financial services are experts. This is intended to guarantee the expertise of parties in the financial markets, so that they can provide sound services to consumers and consequently promote confidence in the financial markets.

The Penalty Scheme in Financial Legislation (Amendment) Act (the new fines act) and the [Administrative Fines in Financial Legislation Decree (Decree on Administrative Fines)] entered into effect on 1 August 2009. The fines act and the Decree on Administrative Fines apply, because the violation took place after 1 August 2009. The basic amount for violation of Section 4:9(2) Wft is €500,000. When determining the amount of the fine, the AFM took into account in its consideration the seriousness and duration of the violation, culpability and financial capacity of Briljant.

The fine has become final as no objection or appeal can be submitted against the decision anymore. If you have any questions or comments you can contact the Financial Markets Information Line on: 0800-5400 540 (free of charge).    

The AFM is committed to promoting fair and transparent financial markets.

As an independent market conduct authority, we contribute to a sustainable financial system and prosperity in the Netherlands.

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