TORONTO, Feb. 3, 2014 /CNW/ -The Ontario Court of Appeal released a unanimous five-judge panel decision today which reversed an earlier decision of that court and clarified that three major securities class actions, brought on behalf of shareholders, can proceed to be litigated through to trial.
Madam Justice Kathryn Feldman, writing for the full court, clarified that an action brought by shareholders Howard Green and Anne Bell could proceed against the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, its President and CEO Gerald McCaughey and other senior directors and officers to recover damages of almost $4 billion as a result of the alleged non-disclosure of CIBC's alleged $11.5 billion exposure to the US subprime market. It is alleged that the subsequent disclosure of this exposure in December 2007 caused massive losses to shareholders of more than $4 billion. This decision reverses a previous lower court decision.
Joel Rochon, senior counsel at Rochon Genova LLP, acted on behalf of the shareholders. He stated: "I am overwhelmed by this news. This is a magnificent day for access to justice. Shareholders now have a green light to pursue CIBC for its stunning failure to disclose its $11.5 billion exposure to the US subprime market. It will now be possible for everyday investors to hold public corporations accountable for misrepresentations and failures to disclose."
Peter Jervis, senior counsel at Rochon Genova LLP stated: "this decision will have significant implications for investor class actions and confirms that Ontario courts, including our senior appellate court, are responsive to the need for investor protection as set out in the recent additions to the Ontario Securities Act which were under review in this appeal."
SOURCE: ROCHON GENOVA LLP
For further information: Joel Rochon (416) 363-1867