Compliance & Regulation

Hong Kong-Singapore joint operation against suspected cross-border ramp-and-dump syndicate

The Securities and Futures Commission (SFC), the Hong Kong Police Force (Hong Kong Police), the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and the Singapore Police Force (Singapore Police) have conducted a joint operation against an active and sophisticated syndicate suspected of operating ramp-and-dump manipulation schemes in Hong Kong and Singapore.

The simultaneous joint operation involving securities regulators and law enforcement agencies in Hong Kong and Singapore is the first-of-its-kind in tackling cross border ramp-and-dump scams.

A total of 10 people – including individuals believed to be the key members of the syndicate and their associates and some senior executives of Hong Kong listed companies – were arrested yesterday during searches of 33 premises in Hong Kong and Singapore by more than 190 officers of the SFC, the Hong Kong Police, the MAS and the Singapore Police.

The Hong Kong-Singapore joint operation came after the SFC, which first discovered  suspicious trading activities of the syndicate, referred the case to the MAS and the Hong Kong Police because of a cross-border element and the scale of suspected money laundering offences, in addition to specific market misconduct offences under the Securities and Futures Ordinance (SFO).


Mr Thomas Atkinson, the SFC’s Executive Director of Enforcement, said: “Tackling investment fraud and scams on online platforms, such as social media ramp-and-dump schemes, remains a top enforcement priority of the SFC.  To this end, the SFC will continue to deploy all the enforcement and supervisory tools at its disposals as well as collaborating with other local and overseas law enforcement agencies and regulatory counterparts. A ramp-and-dump scam is a serious market misconduct offence under the SFO.  Any ramp-and-dump scam, which also involved the active participation or wilful blindness of a controlling shareholder or senior management of listed companies, would be regarded as particularly serious."


The SFC appreciates the assistance of the Hong Kong Police, the MAS and the Singapore Police and will continue to work closely with the Hong Kong Police’s Anti-Deception Coordination Centre and the Investor and Financial Education Council on ongoing investor education.  Investors should also stay vigilant and make informed investment decisions instead of relying on stock tips circulating in chat groups or on social media platforms.