IDA Hearing Panel finds Vance Elder guilty of violating By-law 29.1 and Regulation 1300.1(a)

    CALGARY, March 14 /CNW/ - A Hearing Panel of the Investment Dealers
Association of Canada, appointed pursuant to By-law 20, has found Vance Elder,
at all material times an Approved Person with the Glenmore Landing and Esso
Plaza branch offices of BMO Nesbitt Burns (Nesbitt) in Calgary, an IDA Member
firm, guilty of violating By-law 29.1 and Regulation 1300.1(a).
    Following a disciplinary hearing held in November and December, 2005 and
April and June, 2006, the Hearing Panel found that Mr. Elder knew or was
willfully blind to the fact that his administrative assistant was signing
client signatures as well as Mr. Elder's signature on client account
documentation, contrary to By-law 29.1. The Panel also found that Mr. Elder
knew that his assistant was providing investment advice to his clients,
contrary to Regulation 1300.1(a) and By-law 29.1.
    The Hearing Panel found that the evidence did not support a fourth
allegation that the Respondent engaged in the forgery of clients' signatures
to account documentation.
    Mr. Elder's administrative assistant, Ms. Catherina Blaker, testified
that during the course of working as Mr. Elder's administrative assistant, she
had been directed by Mr. Elder to sign his signature and client signatures on
client account documentation in circumstances where it was convenient and
necessary to have the client account documentation completed. Ms. Blaker also
testified she was led to believe that it was an accepted practice in the
industry to sign client signatures and Mr. Elder's signature in the
circumstances as stated. Further, Ms. Blaker testified that she would speak
with Mr. Elder's clients and provide investment advice, as directed from
time-to-time by Mr. Elder.
    The Hearing Panel noted in its decision that the IDA's case was
principally based on the testimony of Ms. Blaker and that her credibility was
thus "key to the determination of the Panel."
    The Hearing Panel concluded by saying: "In the end the Panel found the
evidence of Blaker to be overall more credible than the evidence of Elder. The
inconsistencies in Blaker's testimony were either not as relevant to the
allegation... or could be more easily explained. The testimony of the other
witnesses from Glenmore Landing overwhelming gave support to her testimony.
Elder's inconsistencies on the other hand went to the heart of the counts. In
addition, the Panel found that many of the interpretations of the evidence it
was being asked to make by Elder were not consistent with a common sense
reading of the evidence."
    The assessment of penalty is pending the Hearing Panel's receipt and
review of Mr. Elder's submissions on the sanction issue.
    Mr. Elder continues to be employed with the Esso Plaza branch office of
BMO Nesbitt Burns in Calgary.

    The Investment Dealers Association of Canada (IDA) is the national
self-regulatory organization of the securities industry. The IDA's mission is
to protect investors, foster market integrity and enhance the efficiency and
competitiveness of the Canadian capital markets. The IDA enforces rules and
regulations regarding the sales, business and financial practices of its
Member firms and their approved persons. Investigating complaints and
disciplining Members and approved persons is part of the IDA's regulatory

For further information:

For further information: Warren Funt, Vice-President, Western Canada,
(604) 331-4750 or; Jeff Kehoe, Director, Enforcement Litigation,
(416) 943-6996 or

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