BCSC Executive Director’s Bulletin: Securities regulator gives notice of hearing and issues temporary order against Cyprus-based website operator
Vancouver - The executive director of the British Columbia Securities Commission has issued a temporary order against Genius Funds (a.k.a. Genius Investments), and is alleging in a notice of hearing that the Cyprus-based company has breached various securities laws.
The executive director issued the temporary order after BCSC staff was alerted that a Vernon-area individual had recently wired $25,000 to the company.
The order temporarily prohibits Genius Funds from trading in any securities in B.C. It also prohibits Genius Funds from engaging in any investor relations activities in the province.
The notice says Genius Funds states that it offers one investment fund that makes payments of up to 1.9 per cent daily, and a second fund that makes payments of up to nine per cent weekly. In addition, the notice says Genius Funds states that it offers the Genius High-Yield Deposit Account that earns depositors interest between 14 per cent and 25 per cent monthly.
The notice alleges Genius Funds is making misrepresentations to investors because it offers a rate of return that is impossible to earn consistently through legal means.
Furthermore, Genius Funds is not registered to participate in B.C.’s securities industry. The notice alleges that Genius Funds has breached, and continues to breach, securities laws by carrying out unregistered activity in the province.
BCSC staff has identified social media websites that are being used to promote Genius Funds investments and a referral program. There is also Genius Funds’ advertising in online classified ads in other provinces.
Staff is conducting an ongoing investigation into the sale of these securities. Anyone who has been contacted by an agent for Genius Funds is asked to contact the BCSC at 604-899-6854 or 1-800-373-6393. People should not send any money to Genius Funds while the cease trade order is in place and the investigation is ongoing.
The allegations in the notice have not been proven. Counsel for the executive director will apply to a commission panel to grant a final order against Genius Funds at a hearing on Feb. 25, 2010 at 10 a.m.
The B.C. Securities Commission is the independent provincial government agency responsible for regulating trading in securities within the province. You may view the notice of hearing on our website, www.bcsc.bc.ca. If you have questions, contact Ken Gracey, media relations, 604-899-6577.