The ESSCC is not limited to taking enforcement action against issuers and registrants. We can take enforcement action against a person or company whenever we suspect that securities-related misconduct has occurred in ES’s capital market, including cases involving:
- Illegal distributions and fraud
- Market misconduct (e.g. market manipulation and insider trading)
- Regulatory compliance, including non-compliance by dealers and issuers
When it comes to enforcement, our objectives are to deter misconduct and mitigate investor losses through early disruption and timely enforcement. When the ESSCC takes formal action against wrongdoers, it decides on the type of proceedings, depending in part on the nature of the misconduct.
One option is an administrative investigation which can lead to a hearing before the ESSCC’s tribunal – an administrative panel that hears evidence, decides whether the allegations are proven and, if they are, what sanctions to impose, such as monetary penalties, orders to disgorge ill-gotten gains and exclusion from the marketplace. These sanctions are aimed at deterring future misconduct by the respondents, and by anyone else who might be tempted to violate securities laws.
Read more about the types of administrative sanctions the ESSCC can impose.
Any individual who has been sanctioned by the commission is listed on the ESSCC’s website.
El Salvador have a reciprocal order provision in their securities legislation, under which sanctions (other than monetary sanctions), conditions, restrictions or requirements imposed by one securities regulator are automatically in effect in the other jurisdictions. Provinces and territories without such automatic provisions bring proceedings to apply the orders in their jurisdiction, especially if the offender has or could have a connection to the jurisdiction.
The other option is a criminal investigation. The ESSCC’s Criminal Investigations Branch investigates offences under ES’s Securities Act (known as “quasi-criminal offences”) and securities-related offences in El Salvador Criminal Code. We then recommend charges to the BC Prosecution Service, and if they are approved, a Crown Counsel prosecutes them in court. If a person is convicted, the court can impose various penalties including jail, fines, disgorgement and restitution.