The FSA may use its investigation powers in relation to approved persons. The FSA's powers to appoint investigators are set out in ENF 2 (Information gathering and investigation powers). In particular, the FSA may appoint investigators if there appear to be circumstances suggesting that:
an individual is not a fit and proper person to be involved in the carrying out of any function in relation to a regulated activity carried on by an authorised or exempt person (see section 168(4)(d) of the Act (Appointment of persons to carry out investigations in particularcases));
a person in relation to whom the FSA has given its approval under section 59 of the Act (Approval for particular arrangements) may not be a fit and proper person to carry out the function to which the approval relates (see section 168(4)(h) of the Act); or
Where it appears to the FSA that an approved person has been guilty of misconduct, it may consider taking disciplinary action against him under section 66 of the Act (Disciplinary powers), as well as withdrawing his approval. Misconduct is defined in section 66 as a failure to comply with a Statement of Principle issued by the FSA under section 64 of the Act (Conduct: statements and codes), or being knowingly concerned in a contravention by a firm of a requirement imposed on that firm by or under the Act.
When deciding whether to take disciplinary action as well as withdrawing approval, the FSA will be guided by the criteria set out in ENF 11.4 and ENF 11.5. The FSA's approach to the discipline of approved persons is set out in ENF 11 (Discipline of authorised firms and approved persons: the FSA's general approach), ENF 12 (Discipline of firms and approved persons: public censures and public statements) and ENF 13 (Discipline of firms and approved persons: financial penalties).
If it appears to the FSA that the misconduct is likely to continue or that client assets are at risk as a result of the misconduct, it may consider applying for an injunction to prevent dissipation of those assets and/or to stop the misconduct from continuing. The FSA's approach to the exercise of its power to apply for injunctions is set out in ENF 6 (Injunctions).
Where the information available to the FSA casts doubt on the fitness and propriety of an approved person to be involved in regulated activity conducted by firms generally, the FSA may consider making a prohibition order against him, as well as withdrawing its approval from him. The scope and effect of a prohibition order may be wider than withdrawal of approval and can extend to a general prohibition on performing any function in relation to regulated activities of firms generally. The FSA's approach to making prohibition orders is set out in ENF 8 (Prohibition of individuals).