TORONTO, June 18, 2019 /CNW/ - The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) today announced the arrest and repatriation of William Wallace, a convicted fraudster who fled Canada in an attempt to evade his four-year prison sentence for offences under the Securities Act (Ontario).
After a warrant for his arrest was issued by the Court, OSC staff obtained an Interpol Red Notice for Wallace, alerting police agencies around the world that he was wanted in Canada. In February 2019, Wallace was arrested upon arrival in the United Arab Emirates.
Wallace has now been remanded to prison to begin serving his four-year sentence.
"We make every effort to hold people like Mr. Wallace accountable for victimizing Ontario investors," said Jeff Kehoe, Director of Enforcement at the OSC. "This includes drawing on our network of law enforcement agencies to track down offenders and return them to Canada to face justice."
Following an investigation and prosecution by members of JSOT, Wallace, along with his partner Robert Heward, were convicted on December 15, 2016 by Justice McLeod of the Ontario Court of Justice at Old City Hall for fraud, unregistered trading and an illegal distribution under the Securities Act. Their convictions resulted from a fraudulent Tanzanian gold mining investment scheme that resulted in approximately $6.8 million in investor losses. Wallace and Heward solicited Ontario investors using personal presentations and promotional materials under the company name "Londoni Gold Corporation." JSOT's investigation revealed that the majority of funds raised from investors was used to support Wallace and Heward's lavish lifestyles.
In August 2016, Wallace, along with partner Robert Heward, fled Canada prior to the completion of their trial. They were convicted and sentenced in absentia to four years in prison. Heward voluntarily returned to Canada in February 2017, was remanded to prison and died shortly afterward.
The OSC would like to thank the RCMP liaison officer in Dubai, Interpol, the Dubai Police Force, and the Toronto Police Service Fugitive Squad for their significant assistance in bringing this matter to a successful conclusion.
To date, JSOT has pursued 44 matters involving 62 accused.
JSOT was established by the OSC as an enforcement partnership between the OSC, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Financial Crime program and the Ontario Provincial Police Anti-Rackets Branch. The primary objective of JSOT is to protect investors and further enhance confidence in the Canadian capital markets through effective enforcement. This is accomplished through collaborative investigations of serious violations of the law using the provisions of the Securities Act or the Criminal Code.
The OSC's partnership with law enforcement allows for criminal charges to be laid by JSOT members, which include police officers seconded to the OSC. Charges laid under the Criminal Code are prosecuted by the Ministry of the Attorney General.
The mandate of the OSC is to provide protection to investors from unfair, improper or fraudulent practices, to foster fair and efficient capital markets and confidence in the capital markets, and to contribute to the stability of the financial system and the reduction of systemic risk. Investors are urged to check the registration of any persons or company offering an investment opportunity and to review the OSC investor materials available at http://www.osc.gov.on.ca.
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SOURCE Ontario Securities Commission
For further information: For Media Inquiries: [email protected]; For Investor Inquiries: OSC Contact Centre, 416-593-8314, 1-877-785-1555 (Toll Free)