The purpose of the conference is to encourage international co-operation between securities authorities in order to protect investors.  The Commission, which has successfully negotiated for the SEC to stage the conference in the Island, is to host and sponsor the event, which takes place at the Radisson Blu Waterfront Hotel in July.  It is believed to be the first time the SEC has staged a conference in one of the British Crown Dependencies.

The conference programme includes a one day seminar designed to promote communication between the US SEC staff and industry participants in the Channel Islands on compliance issues of relevance to investment advisers and collective investment funds.  It is a forum to discuss compliance issues in a practical way, to share experiences and to learn about effective compliance procedures and it should appeal to chief compliance officers and other senior staff, both in the Channel Islands and in other jurisdictions, who deal with compliance matters for funds.    

The seminar will provide an overview of the SEC’s regulatory framework, its examination and enforcement programmes and ways in which firms can build an effective compliance programme.  It is thought to be an ideal event for any firm doing business with the US that wants its key employees to know more first-hand about US securities rules in practice.  The ‘Compliance Outreach Seminar for Compliance Professionals,  Investment Advisers and Investment Funds’ on Tuesday, July 15, is open to finance industry delegates from the Channel Islands and beyond.  

The longer three day conference, ‘Effective Oversight of Capital Markets: Compliance, Examinations, Investigations and Prosecutions of Securities Fraud’, from the 16 – 18 July, is designed for regulators and law enforcement officers only and will be attended by senior figures from regulatory authorities around the world and officials who investigate and prosecute financial crimes such as insider trading, Ponzi schemes, money laundering, and securities fraud.

Speakers at both events include Kurt Gresenz, Assistant Director in the Office of International Affairs at the SEC.  A former partner at a litigation firm in Los Angeles, California, Mr. Gresenz received an award from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for his work with the FBI on the Enron investigation.  Other presenters include David Woodcock, Chair of the SEC’s Financial Reporting and Audit Task Force and Regional Director of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Fort Worth Regional Office, which supervises the enforcement and examination activities in several US states including Texas; Jim Reese, an Assistant Director for the Office of Risk and Analysis and Surveillance within the Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations and Erin McCartney, a Branch Chief in the SEC’s Office of International Affairs.  Previously with the SEC’s Enforcement Division as a staff attorney, Ms. McCartney was part of the team that brought a case against American International Group, Inc (AIG) for fraud.

John Harris, Director General, Commission, will welcome participants to the seminar and provide the opening address.  He said that it was an excellent opportunity for Jersey to have attracted such a high level American regulatory conference to Jersey.  He added:

“Not only do we have some of the senior figures from the Securities and Exchange Commission in the Island to meet with our own government representatives, regulators and industry leaders, but there will also be a range of regulators and law enforcement officers from around the world who regularly attend these important, informative and thought provoking SEC conferences. 

I would encourage those working at a senior compliance industry level locally to consider attending the one day outreach event, especially if their firm is doing, or is likely to do business in the United States or with US firms.  We expect the interest to be international with many delegates from other jurisdictions making the trip to attend.”