(Toronto) October 12, 2001 - The Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO) has laid 55 charges under the Pension Benefits Act in connection with a pension unlocking scheme that was operating in the province.
Charges against Michel Rolland, Michel Dion, Guy Patrick Léveillé, Éric Ferron, the Canadian Corporation Creation Center, National Business Investment Canada Inc., National Business Investment in Trust Inc., and Fiducie du Régime de Retraite des Employés et Membres de Canadian Corporation Creation Center, include failing to exercise the proper care, diligence and skill when administering a pension plan, failure to supply the necessary documents in an investigation and failing to administer a pension plan in accordance with the Pension Benefits Act. These firms were operating as NBI in Trust and CCCC.
The first court appearance was Tuesday October 9, 2001, at which time the case was set over until Tuesday December 6, 2001. If convicted, the defendants could face fines of up to $100,000 on each charge.
The charges stem from an investigation into advertisements claiming that people could get money out of a locked-in RRSP, a locked-in retirement account (LIRA), a life income fund (LIF) or a locked-in retirement income fund (LRIF) under certain conditions. One scheme involved the supposed lending of money to the holder of a locked-in retirement vehicle, while using the vehicle as collateral for the loan. A second scheme involved purchasing shares in a private company using the locked-in vehicle as security. Money would then be loaned against the shares of the company people purchased. People involved in these transactions lost a large amount, if not all, of their retirement savings.
"Both of these types of transactions are illegal under the Pension Benefits Act," said Dave Gordon, Deputy Superintendent, Pensions, at FSCO. "People have to realize they are putting their retirement savings at risk if they get involved in these types of schemes. They could lose everything," added Gordon.
As a result of the same investigation, the registration of the CCCC pension plan has been revoked by the Superintendent of Financial Services. The Deputy Superintendent, Pensions, has taken over as administrator of the plan in order to wind it up.
For more information on the Ontario laws governing pensions, please visit the FSCO website at http://www.fsco.gov.on.ca or call 1-800-668-0128.
The Financial Services Commission of Ontario is the regulator of pension plans in the province.
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