The Securities Appellate Tribunal has reduced the penalty on Shraddha Stock Broking to Rs three lakh from Rs 18 lakh imposed by Sebi in a case related to alleged fraudulent trading in shares of Bhansali Engineering Polymers.
Shraddha Stock Broking had allegedly indulged in self-trades in shares of Bhansali Engineering Polymers which were in the nature of cross trades with entities of MKJ group.
The stock broker had taken large amounts of interest-free loan from these entities for trading in the scrip and is said to have made a profit in the deal, Sebi had alleged.
However, in its order dated December 3, SAT while upholding the findings by Sebi, said no action has been initiated by the regulator against the counter parties (MKJ Group) who provided finance to Shraddha Stock Broking for entering into the trades in question.
"In a way, culpability of the counter parties (MKJ Group) of the appellant who provided the finance is more as compared to the culpability of the appellant (Shraddha Stock Broking) ," SAT said.
The case relates to a probe by Sebi in shares of Bhansali Engineering Polymers during May 12 and October 8, 2003.
Sebi said it had found that the counter's volumes were fluctuating sharply and the scrip was touching the upper circuit limit regularly.
The investigation report revealed, Sebi said, that two trading members namely, TCP Stock Brokers and KCG Investment and Finance had highest concentration of 25.13 per cent and 18.41 per cent respectively in gross purchase at the counter.
Shraddha Stock Broking was a major client who dealt in the shares through these trading members, it had said.
Shraddha Stock Broking also purchased 79,395 shares and sold 50,000 shares through KCG which amounted to 14.11 per cent of total market volume of 55.95 lakh shares.
Sebi had alleged that the stock broker was involved in self-trades which were in the nature of cross trades with entities, mainly MKJ Enterprises, Toplight Vinmay, Shankar, Eminent Sales, Sanatan Merchants, Sweet Solution and Mantu Housing and Projects.
Shraddha Stock Broking had taken large amount of interest free loan from these entities for trading in the scrip and is said to have made a profit of Rs 1.43 crore in the deal, Sebi