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by Mike Caswell
The Canadian Investment Regulatory Organization has permanently banned Wenyuan Fan, also known as Simon Fan, a former CIBC Securities Inc. employee, for forging a client's signature to open an unauthorized account. CIRO says that Mr. Fan's "unethical, dishonest and self-serving" conduct included preparing false notes about a meeting with the client and lying to compliance staff who were later looking into the matter. He opened the account to increase his sales and potentially his pay, according to CIRO.
The penalties for Mr. Fan are contained in a decision that CIRO released on Feb. 7, 2024. In addition to the permanent ban, Mr. Fan must pay a $25,000 fine and $7,500 in CIRO's costs. The penalties were imposed by a three-member panel that heard the case in a one-day hearing on Sept. 1, 2023. Mr. Fan did not attend the hearing, nor did he send a lawyer.
The events at issue go back to Jan. 28, 2021, when Mr. Fan called a client to discuss opening a new account using money from a tax-free savings account that she held. The client, only identified as "YQ" in the decision, did not authorize the new account, CIRO says. Despite that, Mr. Fan prepared the account documentation without her knowledge, the decision states. CIRO claims that he then signed it with an imitation of her signature and submitted it for processing. As part of the account opening, Mr. Fan prepared and submitted forms necessary to transfer the entire balance of the client's TFSA into her new account, CIRO says.
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