Securities Commission Malaysia (SC) recently sued seven individuals at the Kuala Lumpur High Court for the manipulation of shares in APL Industries Bhd (APLI) and is seeking court orders for disgorgement and civil penalty of up to RM7 million and barring the defendants from the capital market.
The SC alleged that Ng Wai Hong, a dealer’s representative at Hwang-DBS Securities Berhad, and six others who were acquainted or connected to her, had actively transacted in large volumes of APLI shares between 7 to 9 November 2006, causing a surge in the volume and price of APLI.
According to the Statement of Claim which was filed by the SC on 21 September 2017, Ng was responsible for planning and carrying out the alleged trading of APLI shares on behalf of the rest of the defendants, who had in turn allowed their accounts to be used for the said manipulative activity. The trades carried out by Ng in the accounts of the other six defendants represented 30.36% of the total volume of APLI shares traded on the market.
The other six defendants are Lo Ga Lung, Toh Pik Chai, Ling Pik Ngieh, Ng Soo Tian, Chan Kok and Chai Shou Wei.
The SC claims that the defendants’ actions had created a false or misleading appearance of active trading with respect to the market for APLI shares as well as having the effect of maintaining the price of APLI shares which were in breach of section 84 and 85 of the Securities Industry Act 1983 respectively.
The disgorgement of all profits obtained by the defendants as a result of the manipulation, will be used to compensate affected investors. The SC is also claiming a civil penalty of RM1 million from each of the seven defendants and orders to bar the defendants from being a director of a public listed company and from trading on the stock exchange for a period of five years.