Montréal - On June 4, 2013, the Court of Québec (Criminal and Penal Division) sentenced Saverina Cottone to a prison term of 20 months for offences related to misrepresentations. She was also ordered to pay fines totalling $128,000 as a result of misrepresentations and illegal practice.
In its decision, the Court took into account a number of factors, including:
- lack of regret and remorse;
- breach of trust with respect to investors;
- loss of funds by investors;
- impacts on victimized investors;
- the use of fraudulent tactics and forgeries (false requests for redemptions, falsified statements of account) for the purpose of misappropriations;
- previous fraud conviction;
- the number of offences over a period of four years;
- the objective seriousness of misrepresentations.
It should be noted that Saverina Cottone had previously pleaded guilty to charges of illegal practice, acting as a life and health insurance representative without a proper certificate. In another court case, she was found guilty of misrepresentations. The decision is currently under appeal. Moreover, she has been subject to sanctions by the Chambre de la sécurité financière (CSF).
A number of investors who had dealings with Saverina Cottone were subsequently compensated through the Fonds d'indemnisation des services financiers.
The Autorité des marchés financiers ("AMF") is the regulatory and oversight body for Québec's financial sector.
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