Decisions and Freeze and cease trade orders Securities
Montréal - On February 4, 2016, the Bureau de décision et de révision (the "Bureau") ordered, in connection with illegal solicitation and distribution activities, Galerie les règles de l'art and François Demers,1 Jean-François Demers, Jean-Marc Picard and Pierre Major to cease any activity in respect of a transaction in securities and cease pursuing activities as an adviser. The Bureau also imposed administrative penalties of $12,000 on Jean-Marc Picard and $6,000 on Pierre Major.
As revealed by the Autorité des marchés financiers ("AMF") in 2015, the respondents proposed illegal investments, promising returns of 10 to 20%, for the purpose of financing the purchase of works of art.
Based on the AMF's investigation, Galerie les règles de l'art, François Demers, Jean-François Demers, Jean-Marc Picard and Pierre Major acted as securities dealers and advisers without being registered with the AMF in any capacity whatsoever and without a prospectus approved by the AMF or an exemption. Moreover, the investigation showed that Jean-Marc Picard and Pierre Major served as a screen to enable Messrs. Demers to cover up their actual involvement in the business and their illegal activities.
Galerie les règles de l'art, François Demers and Jean-François Demers are facing penal proceedings launched by the AMF in connection with this matter. In addition, Jean-François Demers has been found guilty by the Court of Québec in connection with similar activities.
The Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) is the regulatory and oversight body for Québec's financial sector.
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1 The respondent François Demers should not be confused with:
- François Demers who holds certificate 109404 in financial planning and is registered as a dealing representative (mutual fund dealer) with Royal Mutual Funds Inc.;
- François Demers who is registered as a derivatives dealing representative and dealing representative (investment dealer) with Industrial Alliance Securities Inc.