Montréal, June 13, 2011 - Seven of the accused in the Flamingo matter were recently fined a total of $1,238,000 for violations in connection with illegal distributions of investment products related to Flamingo Capital Inc., Flamingo Management Inc., Omniprobe Inc., Omnicorp Bank Inc. and Planitek International.
On May 20, 2011, Judge Nathalie Duperron Roy, Justice of the Peace, imposed fines totalling $325,000 and $50,000 respectively on Flamingo Capital Inc. and Flamingo Management Inc., which are domiciled in Barbados. Both were found guilty of illegal distributions.
The judge also imposed fines totalling $250,000 on Andrew Murray, an individual who lived in Barbados at the time of the distributions and who was found guilty on 10 counts of aiding the Flamingo companies with the distributions.
Fines totalling $248,000 were also imposed on Jean-Pierre Vianna, found guilty on 10 counts of aiding with distributions and 12 counts of illegally pursuing activities as a securities dealer and adviser. Michel Chiasson, who was found guilty on two counts of aiding with distributions and one count of illegally pursuing activities as a dealer, was fined a total of $22,000. Michael Carty was fined $4,000 for two counts of illegally pursuing activities as a dealer.
In the same matter, on April 26, 2011, Yves Daigle was ordered to pay fines totalling $339,000. Mr. Daigle pleaded guilty to 41 charges including aiding with illegal distributions, illegally pursuing activities as a dealer and adviser, and representing that securities would be repurchased.
The AMF also filed a separate statement of offence with 10 charges against Sylvie Picard for aiding the Flamingo companies with the distribution of securities to investors and acting as a dealer in connection with these transactions. These charges were withdrawn by the AMF pursuant to an agreement under which Ms. Picard agreed to co-operate in particular by testifying in the proceeding.
Finally, the AMF also issued a separate statement of offence against Michel Latour containing 4 charges. Mr. Latour was acquitted in a separate proceeding.
In this matter, investors testified that they invested money following representations made during meetings at restaurants in Laval, Longueuil and Beloeil. Essentially, the investors trusted the officers of Planitek, a company that provided investment advice in particular through monthly newsletters distributed by e-mail. The officers of Planitek represented that the money would be invested in humanitarian agencies, that the capital was guaranteed, that the return was high (30 to 60% for terms between six months and one year) and that everything was legal. Some of the investors were reassured by the presence of Jean-Pierre Vianna, who used the title of lawyer.
When some investors wanted to recover their money, they tried several approaches (e-mail, telephone, meetings). All of the responses mentioned delays for various reasons. The investors testified that they lost their money.
The Autorité des marchés financiers ("AMF") is the regulatory and oversight body for Québec's financial industry.
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