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by Mike Caswell
Vancouver-linked lawyer Diane Dalmy has received three years in jail for her part in a pump-and-dump scheme that inflicted $10-million in losses on investors. (All figures are in U.S. dollars.) She received the sentence in an appearance on Tuesday, May 15, before Connecticut Judge Jeffrey Meyer. In addition to the jail term, she must serve three years of supervised release and is subject to a $2-million restitution order.
The jail term comes after Ms. Dalmy pleaded guilty to a conspiracy charge on Feb. 6, 2018. She admitted that she wrote fraudulent legal opinion letters that allowed others to receive tradable shares in several companies. Her participation allowed those behind the fraud to make $5.6-million, according to the government.
Prosecutors had sought five years in jail for Ms. Dalmy, citing her part in a similar case that traced back to Vancouver and included disbarred lawyer John Briner. They said that in 2016, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission fined her after she filed materially false opinion letters supporting the listings of several questionable companies. (The case prosecutors were referring to was an administrative matter in which the SEC pursued Ms. Dalmy for her part in a shell factory scheme. The regulator said that she wrote the opinion letters in support of an effort by Mr. Briner at listing 20 purported mining companies. Mr. Briner had attempted to create the companies as shells by using sham property deals and nominee officers. The SEC stopped the scheme in its early stages, and ultimately fined Ms. Dalmy $680,000. She was later banned from practising law before the SEC.)
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