An Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) panel has sanctioned a former exempt market dealer for fraud.

The regulator ordered Jason Michael Currey to pay a $200,000 administrative penalty and $25,000 in costs of the investigation and hearing, and to remit more than $120,000 in misappropriated funds.

Currey, along with the Healthy Retirement Group Inc. (HRG), Sunset Creek Resources Inc. and 1826487 Alberta Ltd. (182), was sanctioned for breaching Alberta securities laws, including perpetrating a fraud on investors.

Currey was briefly registered with the ASC as an exempt market dealer in 2011. “Neither Currey nor HRG was registered with the ASC to advise in securities during the relevant period,” says the panel in its decision.

Currey was the sole director, shareholder and employee of each of the named companies. Between December 2013 and October 2015, he and the companies illegally traded in Sunset and 182 securities, raising about $3.2 million from nine Alberta investors, the ASC says.

While investors in Sunset and 182 were led to believe their funds would be used to generate returns from certain investment activities, a significant portion was instead used for other purposes, including payments to other investors and to Currey’s personal debts and expenses.

Currey and HRG also acted illegally as advisers in securities by providing investment advice to investors while not registered to do so, according to the ASC.

The ASC panel ordered Currey to pay a $200,000 administrative penalty and $25,000 in costs of the investigation and hearing, and to remit to the ASC $120,200 representing the funds misappropriated.

The panel also imposed market-access bans against Currey and the companies for a period of 20 years from the date of the decision, or until the administrative penalty is paid in full (whichever is later). With limited exceptions, those orders prohibit:

  • Currey from acting as a director or officer of any issuer or any other specified entity, and from acting in certain other capacities in connection with the securities market;
  • Currey and HRG from acting as advisers in securities or derivatives; and
  • Currey, HRG, Sunset and 182 from trading in or purchasing securities or derivatives, or relying on any of the exemptions contained in Alberta securities laws.

The panel noted “the respondents admitted—and we have found—serious and deliberate misconduct which harmed the affected investors and the integrity of the Alberta capital market.”

Read the full decision.