The Insolvency Service has reprimanded the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) for its failure to monitor a banned member who stole nearly £4 million in estate assets.
The banned member, who was not named in the Insolvency Service's report, was convicted of fraud in 2017 and banned from practician as an insolvency practitioner for 15 years. However, the ICAEW did not take any steps to monitor the member after his conviction, and he was able to continue to practice as an insolvency practitioner under a different name.
The Insolvency Service found that the ICAEW's failure to monitor the banned member was "a serious lapse in professional conduct" and that the institute had "failed to protect the public interest." The ICAEW has been ordered to pay £10,000 in costs to the Insolvency Service.
In a statement, the ICAEW said that it "deeply regrets" the lapse in professional conduct and that it has "taken steps to ensure that this does not happen again." The institute said that it has "strengthened its monitoring procedures" and that it is "committed to protecting the public interest."
The ICAEW's failure to monitor the banned member is a serious lapse in judgement and it is clear that the institute needs to do more to protect the public interest. The Insolvency Service's reprimand is a wake-up call for the ICAEW and it is essential that the institute takes steps to ensure that this does not happen again.
In the meantime, the public should be aware of the risks associated with working with an ICAEW member who has been banned from practicing. If you are considering hiring an ICAEW member, you can check their status on the ICAEW's website.
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