VANCOUVER, June 17 /CNW/ - A Hearing Panel of the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) has accepted settlement agreements, which include sanctions, between IIROC staff and both John Anastasious Collias and Karen Marie Young.
In his and her settlement agreements, Mr. Collias and Ms. Young admitted they failed to meet the standard required of them in their role as gatekeepers to the capital markets in connection with the trading of bulletin board and pink sheets stocks in the client account of a subsidiary of a Liechtenstein-based bank.
Mr. Collias and Ms. Young have each agreed to a penalty which includes an eight-month ban from receiving registration approval in any capacity with an IIROC-regulated dealer firm and a fine of $20,000. Ms. Young agreed that her ban should not be allowed to run concurrent with any other ban. Each has also agreed to pay an additional $5,000 in costs.
The Hearing Panel accepted the agreements on June 2, 2010. The agreement states the parties violated IIROC Rule 29.1 when they accepted trading instructions for the account without exercising the standard of care expected to satisfy themselves of the legitimacy of the trading, which had the appearance of being or potentially being improper market-related activity.
Trading in the account consisted primarily of the sale of Over-the-Counter Bulletin Board and Pink Sheets stocks in companies with no history of generating operating revenues. Their price and volume charts "were consistent with a 'pump and dump' scheme or improper market-related activity," according to the agreements.
The violations occurred between February and August, 2007, when Mr. Collias and Ms. Young were Registered Representatives employed with the 1177 West Hastings Street offices of Gateway Securities Inc. in Vancouver. IIROC began its investigation into Mr. Collias' conduct in September of 2007, and into Ms. Young's conduct in January of 2008. Neither is currently registered in any capacity with an IIROC-regulated firm.
IIROC is the national self-regulatory organization which oversees all investment dealers and trading activity on debt and equity marketplaces in Canada. Created in 2008 through the consolidation of the Investment Dealers Association of Canada and Market Regulation Services Inc., IIROC sets high quality regulatory and investment industry standards, protects investors and strengthens market integrity while maintaining efficient and competitive capital markets.
IIROC carries out its regulatory responsibilities through setting and enforcing rules regarding the proficiency, business and financial conduct of dealer firms and their registered employees and through setting and enforcing market integrity rules regarding trading activity on Canadian equity marketplaces.
SOURCE Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) - General News
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