On 11 February 2019 Hong Kong’s Court of First Instance held that the power of the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) to obtain trading records from intermediaries under s. 181 of the Securities and Futures Ordinance (SFO) does not violate the privilege against self-incrimination.
The Court dismissed a judicial review application brought by a SFC-licensed corporation and its responsible officer (applicants) against the SFC in connection with an investigation of a suspected market manipulation in the shares of a Japan-listed company.
During the investigation by the SFC and certain Japanese regulators (with whom the SFC has entered into international cooperation and mutual assistance arrangements), the SFC used its statutory powers to compel the applicants to provide information and materials (compelled materials) under the SFO.
The compelled materials were then provided to and used by the Japanese regulators in proceedings in Japan.
The Court found that: