BCSC settles with Panamanian investment dealer for unregistered trading
Vancouver - In a settlement agreement with the British Columbia Securities Commission (BCSC), Verdmont Capital, S.A. has admitted to trading securities on behalf of B.C. residents without being registered. Verdmont, an investment dealer based in Panama, filed for liquidation in January 2016 and is no longer operating.
The agreement states that between January 2010 and August 2013, Verdmont traded securities on behalf of over 100 B.C. residents without being registered by the Commission.
In May of 2013, BCSC staff discovered that Verdmont promoted its securities trading services through its website, but did not post any restrictions or limitations on Canadians opening accounts or using the advertised services. As such, Verdmont did not take reasonable precautions not to trade on behalf of B.C. residents.
After inquiries from BCSC staff in July of 2013, Verdmont and Panamanian securities regulators provided staff with information regarding over 100 Verdmont B.C. client accounts.
The agreement notes that prior to BCSC staff's investigation, upon determining that its B.C. client accounts were not in compliance with B.C. securities laws, Verdmont began to freeze or close the B.C. client accounts. Verdmont also added a disclaimer to its website prohibiting Canadian residents from opening accounts.
Verdmont has paid $350,000 to the BCSC in respect of settlement of this matter. Verdmont is also permanently banned from trading in or purchasing any securities and from engaging in investor relations activities.
BCSC staff acknowledges and appreciates the assistance provided by the Superintendencia del Mercado de Valores of Panama and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission during this investigation.
You may view the settlement agreement on our website www.bcsc.bc.ca by typing Verdmont Capital, S.A. or 2016 BCSECCOM 369 in the search box. Information regarding disciplinary proceedings can be found in the Enforcement section of the BCSC website.
Please visit the Canadian Securities Administrators' Disciplined List for information relating to persons and companies disciplined by provincial securities regulators, the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) and the Mutual Fund Dealers Association (MFDA).
About the British Columbia Securities Commission (www.bcsc.bc.ca)
The British Columbia Securities Commission is the independent provincial government agency responsible for regulating capital markets in British Columbia through the administration of the Securities Act. Our mission is to protect and promote the public interest by fostering:
- A securities market that is fair and warrants public confidence
- A dynamic and competitive securities industry that provides investment opportunities and access to capital
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604-899-6854 or 1-800-373-6393 (toll free)
Learn how to protect yourself and become a more informed investor at www.investright.org