CMA clears six traders in KenolKobil scandal

Kobil Petrol Station along Koinange Street, Nairobi. [Boniface Okendo,Standard]

The Capital Markets Authority (CMA) has dropped a second suspect and five traders under investigation into the KenolKobil insider trading scandal.

Charles Field-Marsham has cleared his name with the regulator after he was accused of helping leak the potential buyout price to financial advisor Aly-Khan Satchu, who then mobilised his trading network to buy the shares on the exchange and later sell to Rubis at a premium.

“Upon review of the written submissions of Charles Field-Marsham in response to the Notice to Show Cause issued to him and further investigatory findings, the CMA board has cleared (him) of potential liability for insider dealing,” CMA said in a press statement.

Initially, the markets regulator also dropped the name of KenolKobil Chief Executive David Ohana from the list of suspects after he said in court papers that he had cooperated with CMA and had not sought to dispute orders issued to seize his phone and laptop.

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The regulator has also returned money to an unnamed trader that was seized during the probe.

“CMA board has released funds amounting to Sh3.8 million belonging to the last trader following a determination that he had not traded using insider information,” it said.

Responding to the announcement by CMA, Mr Field-Marsham said he was delighted with the positive outcome.

“Knowing that I had not been involved in any wrongdoing whatsoever, I expected that the CMA would eventually exonerate me after its thorough investigation. This is indeed what has happened. The CMA has now cleared me of any potential liability and is not proceeding with any enforcement proceedings against me,” he said.

Initial reports indicated that CMA had pulled several deals from the Sh6.5 billion Kestrel Capital trades in the oil marketer’s shares with some of Mr Satchu’s executed trades to various customers.

Returned money

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CMA says five traders opted to return the money, which helped the regulator collect an extra Sh19 million in addition to the recoveries of Sh458 million in March 2019.  

“CMA has completed the outstanding aspects of the insider trading investigations into the KenolKobil counter and has secured the surrender of an additional Sh19 million of potentially illegal gains through No Contest Settlement Agreements from an additional five traders whose accounts were frozen,” said the statement.

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Capital Markets AuthorityKoinange StreetKenolKobil