Decisions and Freeze and cease trade orders Securities
Montréal – In a decision handed down today in the Court of Québec (Criminal and Penal Division), district of Montréal, Judge Céline Lacerte-Lamontagne found Benoît Laliberté guilty on 41 counts brought against him by the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) in October 2004. The AMF is satisfied with the guilty verdict, which recognizes the merit of the overwhelming evidence it presented.
Under the decision, Benoît Laliberté was found guilty of violating the Securities Act (R.S.Q. c V-1.1) (the "Act"):
- for failing to file a report disclosing a change in his control over the securities of a reporting issuer, namely, Jitec Inc., thereby violating section 97 of the Act (30 counts);
- for insider trading in the securities of Jitec Inc. while having privileged information about the company, thereby violating section 187 of the Act (4 counts);
- for assisting Inc. in making a misrepresentation in press releases that could affect the market value or price of the company's securities, thereby violating 196 of the Act (2 counts);
- for making a misrepresentation in connection with a transaction relating to securities by promising investors, at the time they purchased shares of Jitec Inc., that contracts worth millions of dollars had been or would soon be signed by Jitec Inc. and another company, thereby violating section 197 of the Act (4 counts);
- and for giving an undertaking relating to the future value or price of the securities of Jitec Inc. in connection with a transaction relating to the securities of the company, thereby violating section 199 of the Act ( count).
During sentencing representations and as indicated in the statements of offence, the AMF is seeking fines of more than $1.3 million, plus costs, or double the minimum fine, due to the seriousness of the offences. The AMF cannot however request a prison sentence, because the offences were committed before the effective date of the legislative provisions enabling it to do so.
The AMF stresses that illegal insider trading is unacceptable and must be penalized. There cannot be one market for insiders and another for everyone else—one market for those who put their savings at risk and another for those who put the integrity of the markets at risk.
In August 2007, Ali Reza Bassiri was found guilty in the matter of Jitec Inc. by the Court of Québec on four counts brought against him by the AMF for violating the Act by giving an undertaking to investors relating to the future value or price of a security of Jitec Inc. in connection with a transaction in the company's securities.
A class action lawsuit has already been launched by investors in this matter.
The Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) is the regulatory and oversight body for Québec’s financial sector.
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Frédéric Alberro (514) 940-2176
Québec City: 418-525-0337