Montréal - The Autorité des marchés financiers (the "AMF") has launched a penal proceeding against Ghislain Lavoie which includes one count for aiding with an illegal practice as a securities adviser. The AMF is seeking an $18,000 fine.

The AMF's investigation shows that Ghislain Lavoie solicited investors to entrust the management of their securities portfolio to the company S.F.E. or to Charles Rancourt and told them that the money would be invested in instruments providing a good return.

Ghislain Lavoie allegedly obtained the access codes and passwords of the self-directed brokerage accounts of these investors and asked them to sign certain documents, including a confidentiality agreement as well as trading authorization and a mandate. Mr. Lavoie allegedly gave the access codes and passwords to Charles Rancourt.

The amounts entrusted to their management were purportedly used to purchase securities of Ressources Antoro inc. or Exploration Tom inc. (also known as Les Mines d'Or Excel inc.). Following trading in their account, investors lost almost all the sums placed under management.

Charles Rancourt pleaded guilty to 55 charges for illegal practice as a securities dealer or adviser in September 2012.

Reminder to investors

In its most recent awareness campaign, This link will open in a new window, the AMF reminds consumers that it is important to check whether the person offering them an investment product is authorized to do so by consulting the Register of firms and individuals authorized to practise on the AMF's website.

The Autorité des marchés financiers (the AMF) is the regulatory and oversight body for Québec's financial sector.

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