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FCA secures £2m account forfeiture order against fintech QPay Europe

(FCA), the Britain's financial regulatory body, signage is seen at their head offices in London, Britain March 10, 2022. REUTERS/Toby Melville
The FCA claimed that the money was the proceeds of illegal activity connected to criminal proceedings in the USA. Photo:Toby Melville/Reuters

The UK’s financial watchdog has received a forfeiture order for £2m regarding fintech QPay Europe.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said the company “which claims to be a fintech start up offering due diligence and underwriting services” had consented to a court order to give up the money.

The money was initially frozen in urgent proceedings brought by the FCA late last year and has now been given up under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

Read more: FCA creates 80 new roles to crack down on rogue firms

The FCA claimed that the money was the proceeds of illegal activity connected to criminal proceedings in the USA concerning an alleged conspiracy to commit wire fraud against banks, credit card companies, and other financial service providers.

QPay first came to the watchdog's attention when it applied to be regulated in March 2020. It has now withdrawn its application. The FCA added that it is not alleging that QPay is involved in this conspiracy.

Read more: FCA warns more self-invested personal pension providers to go bust

Mark Steward, executive director of enforcement and market oversight at the FCA, said: “Account forfeiture orders are an important means of intervening and capturing illegal money and this action is a good example of what can be done. The funds will now be used to assist the FCA and other authorities fight illegal activity. The FCA will continue to vet applications for authorisation to ensure firms meet our standards of integrity as well as competence.”

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