A Too Hot To Handle is a story of corporate vengeance, greed and victimisation portrayed through one man’s battle to uphold his integrity, competence and personal worth. What became known in the media as “the Fedbond saga” dragged on for four long years, and the final result put a big question mark over the ability of the country’s ultimate financial watchdog to distinguish between fraudulent enterprises and others just suffering temporary setbacks. One afternoon in November 2003, John Field received a phone call informing him that the Scorpions were on their way to his company to arrest him. They did not actually arrive, but it marked the beginning of John’s four-year battle with the Financial Services Board (FSB) to retain control of his 1.6 billion rand part-bond company, FedBond, and protect his investors’ money. An apparent vengeful tip-off set the wheels in motion for the FSB investigation of FedBond, whereby it was prohibited from accepting new investments from the public, pending a court order for curatorship. Allegations of dishonesty, mismanagement, unlawful conduct and gross irregularities rang out from the press as they branded it “another Masterbond saga”. The title explains how from Masterbond to Fidentia, the misuse of the curatorship provisions has cost investors billions. With fortitude and tenacity, John takes on the FSB, refusing to deliver his company and his investors’ savings into the hands of a curator, who would ultimately sell it off piece by piece at a very low price.
A Tiger By The Tail
book by Eunice Alfonso