BCSC Executive Director's Bulletin: Securities regulator issues notice of hearing alleging that unregistered Bahamian company engaged in misconduct

VANCOUVER, Sept. 7, 2011 /CNW/ - The executive director of the British Columbia Securities Commission has issued a notice of hearing alleging that a Bahamian company breached securities laws by engaging in trading and advising in securities within B.C. without being registered.

The notice alleges that Gibraltar Global Securities Inc., a company registered in the Bahamas that provides offshore securities brokerage, investment management and advisory services, carried out trades and provided securities advice on behalf of B.C. residents without being registered to do so.

Furthermore, the notice alleges that the company refused to provide information regarding its B.C. clients to the BCSC and the Securities Commission of the Bahamas (SCB).

The notice also states:

  • In 2010, the SCB performed an inspection of Gibraltar's offices, during which it found some of the information requested by the BCSC. The inspection was unrelated to the BCSC's 2009 request.

  • On January 20, 2011 the SCB provided the BCSC with information disclosing that at least 16 B.C. residents were the beneficial holders of Gibraltar accounts. The BCSC later learned the identities of three more B.C. residents who hold Gibraltar accounts.

  • Of the 20 B.C. residents known to hold Gibraltar accounts, one has been convicted of wire fraud and securities fraud in the United States, another is the subject of a BCSC hearing for which the decision is pending, and a third is the subject of a BCSC investigation for market manipulation that involved the deposit of securities in a Gibraltar account by a B.C. reporting issuer.

On August 5, 2011, the BCSC issued a Freeze Order under section 151 of the Act against Gibraltar's accounts at a Vancouver brokerage firm, freezing approximately $2.2 million.

The notice states that Gibraltar's refusal to provide the BCSC with the names, account information, and account statements for all B.C. residents who have beneficially held accounts with it makes Gibraltar unsuitable to engage in securities-related activities in, or connected with, B.C.

These allegations have not been proven. Counsel for the executive director will apply to set dates for a hearing into the allegations before a panel of commissioners on October 4, 2011 at 9:00am.

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 by typing Gibraltar or 2011 BCSECCOM 421 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 Persons List for information relating to persons disciplined by provincial securities regulators, the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) and the Mutual Fund Dealers Association (MFDA).

Learn how to protect yourself and become a more informed investor at www.investright.org


SOURCE British Columbia Securities Commission

For further information:

or if you have questions, contact Richard Gilhooley, media relations, 604-899-6713. For public inquiries, call 604 899 6854 or 1 800 373 6393 (toll free).


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