The Respondents sent their time-sensitive Settlement proposal to Staff on November 7, 2013. Finally after 7 weeks of waiting the Respondents were very eager to receive the reply from the Litigator at the BCSC. As the attachment was opened, eagerness turned to frustration as Staff indicated they did not even take the Settlement Agreement to the Executive Director for approval (or even a review/negotiation). The reason the offer was time sensitive is the builder and lender were anxious to move the project forward in a timely fashion. There was NO reason ever given why Staff took this amount of time to reply.
Instead Staff indicated the only way they would take a Settlement Offer to the Executive Director is IF pleaded guilty to their long list of allegations and agreed to pay $5.8 million dollars in fines and disgorgement. The BCSC website indicates all Settlements must be paid in full at the time the Settlement Agreement is agreed to – this was impossible for the Respondents, let alone the FACT that many of the allegations in the Notice of Hearing were NOT accurate.
ON WHAT PLANET DOES A PERSON HAVE TO PLEAD GUILTY TO ALL ALLEGATIONS OUTLINED IN A NOTICE OF HEARING AND THEN PAY A “RANSOM” OF NEARLY $6 MILLION DOLLARS JUST TO GET THEIR SETTLEMENT OFFER NEGOTIATED? THIS IS BORDERLINE EXTORTION!
The parties could have avoided a long, lengthy, expensive hearing IF Staff Litigators and the Executive Director would have even looked at the proposal and actually thought about the investors. In hindsight, it appears that the BCSC did not have the investors best interest at stake as their website promotes – nor was it a fair system for all parties. Please read for yourself, the reply from Staff and ask “WHY DID THE BCSC NOT TAKE THE TIME TO EVEN REVIEW THE SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT WHEN SO MUCH WAS AT STAKE FOR THE INVESTORS?”
We encourage anyone affected by the Settlement Offer not even being put onto the Executive Directors desk for a review to contact the BCSC at 1-604-899-5600 during regular business hours. Maybe you can get an answer – the Respondents have certainly not been able to do so.
In the time leading up to the investigation by the BCSC into my company, we had met Chilliwack Times journalist Tyler Olsen (“Olsen”) on a couple different occasions – he was always civil and we talked about different things including a common bond we had in hockey – namely the Chilliwack Bruins – a WHL hockey team that played in Chilliwack from roughly 2006-2011.
Tyler Olsen (Reporter)
When the BCSC brought forward their allegations on June 14, 2013, understandably Olsen wrote a very negative article which he took from the biased press release sent out by the BCSC. Olsen did make contact with me and asked if I wanted to make a comment with regard to the allegations. I provided him a letter that indicated the allegations were just that – allegations and that we were very much focused on a settlement of some sort that would see the investors in FCC and DCF still participate in the project at the Falls. This should sound VERY familiar to many of you reading this knowing that we did everything to get the Staff at the BCSC to accept the Settlement Offer. See earlier post in this blog for proof.
I didn’t see/hear from Olsen again until the first day of the hearing (April 7, 2014) when I noticed him lurking around the hearing room like a human parasite.
After that first day of the hearing, he approached me as I was exiting the hearing room – I remember wondering why a little 2nd rate reporter from a small newspaper would travel all the way to Vancouver and he replied he had been hired freelance by the Vancouver Province to further update the story – that he had written on the previously June.
We talked as we entered the elevator and I asked him directly if he was going to cover the rest of the hearing and he said that the Province had only paid him to cover the first day of the hearing that was scheduled for 10 days. I told him that was unfortunate because the fraud allegations against me in the amount of $5.45 million were extremely inaccurate and I told him about the Settlement Offer that I had desperately tried to get ANYONE at the Commission to even review (let alone except). I asked him to please come back to my hearing and report on the extensive cross-examination I had planned for the flunky BCSC investigator Liz Chan – I told him that I thought I was going to be able to get to the bottom of her accounting of the $5.45 million fraud and that I would do so by conducting an extensive cross-examination of Chan. He said that he would need to be “paid” to do that. I literally remember thinking the guy was a complete scum bag for saying something so very inappropriate.
By this time, I was beginning to see the slant this bozo was going to put on the story – I mean, how can you write an article that is not biased if you only know ONE side of the story based on a slanderous press release put out by the BCSC and refuse to listen to both sides unless you are paid?
As we walked through the lobby on the ground floor of the building – we finished our conversation and he says, “Oh, I forgot something and I have to go back this way…”. I didn’t give it much thought and continued on my way out of the building.
As I walked out the front door and entered the sidewalk – some scum bag photographer (named Arlen Redekop) from the biased media walked up to me and started taking my picture. Again, it became more and more abundantly clear the slant/angle these people were going to take and I expected the worse…
On the second day of the hearing, I made my way to Vancouver and just as I entered the hearing room I received a phone call from a friend asking me if I had seen the paper – I said I had not and he told me I was on the front cover with a headline that stated “Investors Millions Evaporate”. I read the article and it was pathetic – he actually made fun of the way I presented my opening statement by opening the article with, “Just like his investors’ millions, Rodney Jack Wharram’s way with words seemed to evaporate Monday at the start of a hearing that could see him banned from the B.C. investment industry. Wharram, who is representing himself at the B.C. Securities Commission hearing, frequently stumbled over his words as he faced allegations around $9.3 million he is alleged to have raised from investors between 2007 and 2010.” I was nervous as I had NEVER been in a hearing room before (as a defendant) and I certainly did not know what to expect but I certainly did not stumble over words and I was NOT at a loss for words. Reviewing the transcripts of that day – I asked the Panel Chair several questions regarding procedure as I did not understand many aspects of presenting my evidence. Considering I only spoke for about 5 minutes that entire day, I fail to see his logic in his reporting.
Second rate journalism is the ONLY way to describe his wording. When the findings came out in February 2015, the Vancouver Province completely scrub the article written by Olsen – and who can blame them? This is because the headline and story they (and the BCSC) tried to go with was NOT accurate. To this day, the only place you can find it is here. It is pretty ironic that they decided to go with this headline on the front page of the paper and then have an unrepresented defendant blow most of the allegations out of the water, including the money aspect. Facts are – Investors Millions DID NOT evaporate as they tried to stuff down their readers throats. It must have been very embarrassing for them ALL!
Fast forward to February of 2015, Olsen either lost his job with the local Chilliwack Times (or was transferred) to to an associated paper in Abbotsford, BC. His replacement (in Chilliwack) was another so-called investigative journalist named Paul Henderson (“Henderson”). My issues with Henderson are simple – he NEVER once tried to contact me for my side of the story before he wrote a very slanderous article in December 2015 – after the BCSC issued their decision.
The day this article hit the papers, a friend called me and informed me of the story – I immediately went to the Chilliwack Times to confront him. I asked why he was not telling both sides of the story and that we had 94% of the dollar amount of the fraud allegations dismissed. I explained I did not have a lawyer and tried to explain to him what was happening down at the BCSC with Staff not even presenting the Settlement Agreement to the Executive Director – this alone could have protected the investors in the project which IS their mandate!
He went back and edited a small portion of the article that hit the on-line edition of the Chilliwack Times – his story that went physically to press was different than the one that was on the internet – complete gong show! He couldn’t even co-ordinate that properly – which again leads to questioning his professionalism.
I reached out to Henderson one final time (in May 2016) after I started this blog and asked if he was willing to meet – he made up some excuse of being too busy and said he could meet some time later the following week…I never heard back from him. Like I said, I feel I have every right to question his professionalism.
A simple search of the internet and one can easily find a very derogatory photo which contains a comment regarding Henderson. What a terrible thing to have written about you – whether it is true or not. Albeit, one may conclude the graffiti (on his office wall) was more than likely done by someone in retaliation for some biased article he wrote in an attempt to sell papers – it questions why citizens would go to this extent to write something so horrible about this man.
Graffiti outside the Chilliwack Times
In closing, we look at the facts and it is no wonder that the state of “media” is the way it is in this country when we see two reporters like these two who have no desire to get BOTH sides of a story before they go to press with their slanted theory of events. When I went to Henderson’s office to confront him, he even spun what I said to him in private (off the record) into his story – and when I confronted him on that – he said, “nothing you said to me was private”.
A real investigative journalist should want to get to the bottom of a story and give independent details to inform their reader so that reader can form their own opinion – again, its no wonder people are not reading newspapers the way they use to. Which leads to the likely reason why so many of these ‘propaganda spewing generic robots’ are losing their jobs across the country.
Did the Alberta Securities Commission (“ASC”) protect the investors in a recent matter they allowed to be “settled” without going to a hearing? Allegations of misleading/untrue statements to investors, illegal trading, and FRAUD were brought forward in a November 2015 Notice of Hearing against Douglas Vermeeren of Calgary, Alberta.
Looking at the math in the Vermeeren Settlement Agreement, we see he raised $735,000 from 43 unsuspecting investors. David Linder (the Executive Director for the ASC) went on to state that Vermeeren “co-mingled funds in the Respondents personal bank account and corporate accounts controlled by the Respondent. Some funds from these accounts were used for personal expenditures and to pay investors. The Respondent did not keep adequate accounting records making it difficult to determine the precise scope of the fraudulent use of the investors funds.” Furthermore, later in the same document, Linder goes on to state, “Some of the Investors funds were used for third-party lending.”
Of the $735,000 raised, only $382,971 (a mere 52%) was paid back to the investors – leaving a balance of $352,029 not returned.
HERE IS WHERE PEOPLE HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO SHAKE THEIR HEADS – the ASC went on to negotiate a settlement of only $120,000 for ALL wrongdoing plus charge him a meager $10,000 to cover the cost of the investigation into his businesses. They went on to issue him a 10-year ban from securities market but allowed him, “in his personal capacity, and for the benefit of his family to trade in or purchasing in exchange listed securities…”
Let’s get this straight – this man was alleged to have committed fraud, took $735,000 from the public, paid back only 52% of the money to his investors – and then only has to come up with $130,000 and sit on the sidelines for 10 years? The investors are out 48% of their money but the ASC gets their $130,000? What happened to the other $352,000 the investors are out? Who is protecting these people and who is going to get their money back?
This is insane! It appears the ASC are run just the same as their sister-affiliation to the west – the “wonderful” BCSC. They do not have the best interest of the investors – this is very clear!
Looking back at another matter before the ASC, we see that this is NOT the first time ASC Executive Director David Linder has been very liberal giving out punishment – we blogged back in June 2016 that the ASC handled another matter regarding the business dealings of League Financial in an atrocious manner – where investors reportedly lost $370 MILLION and the people behind the company were fined a dismal $250,000 by the ASC.
Alberta really is the WILD, WILD WEST!
NOTE: Looking quickly into Vermeeren, we see he is jet-setting to places in both the USA and the United Kingdom applying his trade – stopped in Alberta but still going strong in other areas it would appear. We wonder if he still has the same book keeping skills this time around?
As indicated in an earlier blog – as part of an FOI request, we asked the BCSC to provide a copy of the original Fraud Fighter video they launched on November 6, 2014 as part of their renewal of their so-called “award winning” campaign against securities fraud.
As you will see, at the time we were very concerned with the overall message sent out to the average investor – the video shows a character “Jean” doing a bunch of stupid gymnastic moves in a park and ends with her going to the residence of “David” where it implies she physically attacked him.
Now, before you watch the current version, we want you to watch the version we saw for the first time on Nov 6, 2014 (and that was just obtained via a FOI request) – this was AFTER our hearing but before final oral submissions were made on November 21, 2014 in our matter.
On November 21, 2014, we appeared in front of the Panel at the hearing and before we began our arguments we opened with the following:
WHARRAM: Before I begin today I would like your permission to read a brief statement I’d like to make for the record. Can I do that?
THE CHAIR: I don’t know what you’re about to say, so I don’t really have any comment about that, so carry on.
WHARRAM: In the last week I’ve been approached at my residence by nothing short of what I would call a hoodlum. The hoodlum in no certain terms told me they wanted their friend’s money back that I scammed. I have made a police report of the incident with a Constable Nishin (phonetic) of the Chilliwack RCMP and have been issued a police file number. Recently I had an opportunity to watch what the British Columbia Securities Commission in another glamorous press release calls an entertaining video. In the video the main character, the mother of a victim of fraud, attacks an alleged fraudster with physical violence that I will call a vigilante act. The video is a sick, pathetic attempt to make the people of BC aware of securities fraud. This would be equivalent of the Vancouver Police Homicide Department making an entertaining video promoting family members of murder victims to attack an alleged perpetrator. On November 6, 2014 Brenda Leong, the chair of the British Securities Commission, calls the fraud fighter video fun in a speech that she did at the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada’s 2014 national conference. I’m concerned if anything happens to my family or myself, I think this video is — and if anyone hasn’t seen it in this room I encourage you to see it, it is actually sick, made me sick to my stomach when I first seen it. I just want to bring it to the panel’s attention, public’s attention. I think it’s important that people like myself are protected out there. Thank you.”
Source: November 21, 2014 Hearing Transcript
By the time we got back to Chilliwack at about 6 PM that night the video had been scrubbed with a message saying a new version would be available shortly. A few days later, the following video was put up on the BCSC’s YouTube page where it remains today. This is a pathetic waste of money…of time…and shows what the people at the BCSC seem to stand for – encouraging people to take the law into their own hands is NEVER warranted. It is hard to believe that in an office full of lawyers not one of them said, “Hey, I think this is a little much, maybe we shouldn’t have characters taking the law into their own hands and attacking others at their home.”
Here is the revised version that was slapped together and re-posted back onto their YouTube channel:
The overall theme at the BCSC is becoming more and more apparent on a daily basis – and it is time that people in this Province wake up to their actions! Call the BCSC and find out who was responsible for producing this horrible video campaign – you have a right to know!
What can only be described as BIZARRE, we have recently came across some of the craziest information thus far into our exposure of the Staff at the BCSC…
Last week, we decided to lodge a formal complaint with the Ethics Commissioner of the Certified Professional Accounts of British Columbia (“CPABC”) with respect to Elizabeth Chan’s actions (or lack of actions) in her role as the lead investigator in our matter. It is our opinion that she was the person that completed a significant portion of the accounting in which other Staff (including Executive Director Paul Bourque) relied upon when bringing the allegations of the $5.45 million fraud. Her math was horrendous and was proven to be in the hearing room as the Panel threw out some 94% of it in their decision.
Investigator Chan WAS a Certified General Accountant (“CGA”) at the time and they are held to what appears to by a very high level. A simple review of the Chartered Professional Accountants Act / CPA Code of Professional Conduct (the “Act”) we easily find:
Our assertion is that Investigator Chan knew (or ought to have known) that she was giving her superiors the wrong information when the brought allegations (in the exact dollar amount) that she prepared. She admitted on the stand that she was the one who prepared the documents presented at the hearing – she had to have known they were “false or misleading”. We think Investigator Chan is the scumbag that intentionally brought wrong information that formed the allegation of the $5.45 million fraud.
In cross-examination, she admitted several times to knowing of other key information that she neglected (or simply omitted) from the work she prepared. According to the Act (in which she MUST adhere to) she is in complete breach of the Act.
Now, this is where the story gets truly bizarre! When we were researching and trying to determine where we could lodge our complaint of Investigator Chan we came across a document on the internet titled “2014-2015 Report to the Public” that was prepared by the CPABC. By clicking on the link above you will see on page 11 (under the complaints section) the name of Liz Chan and Ed Tanaka. Liz Chan is designated as a Director, Ethics and Mr. Tanaka is designated as a Director, Ethics & Documentation.
On September 24, 2016, we sent the complaint letter ( letter-to-cpabc-elizabeth-chan-redacted ) to their office for their review and comment. Only a few days later, we found out that the complaint officer Liz Chan is none other than the Elizabeth Chan (from the BCSC) who we were lodging our complaint about. We came across Liz Chan’s bio in another publication and can confirm this is her from the picture and the wording of the bio.
So, we now have a complaint into an office where Liz Chan works about a Elizabeth Chan who use to work at the BCSC? We can’t make this stuff up! We followed up with a phone call to the CPABC offices and the receptionist indicated she had never heard of an Liz Chan (or even an Elizabeth Chan) in that office. From what we can tell Chan started working at the CPABC office in April 2014 (the same month as our hearing) and was terminated/or quit sometime thereafter – many months ago. By reviewing the member look-up option on their site, we can see that Chan still holds her designation as a CGA in the Province of BC.
We did receive an email from a Nancy Lis (from the CPABC office) indicating she did receive our complaint and will formally respond this coming week. We very much look forward to hearing back from them and to see if they are going to go after one of their own.
As the World Turns down at the Commission – as we said yesterday, why the mass exodus from the Commission? This is the 4th person that had a part in bringing the false allegations of a $5.45 million fraud against the Respondents that has been fired or resigned from the BCSC. If it looks like a rat….smells like a rat…it is more than likely a rat!
One theory, is that the superiors at the BCSC were outraged by the work of Chan that lead to a $5.45 million fraud being unproven by a Respondent that did not even have a lawyer. They spent A LOT of time and money on bringing the case to hearing and did not get their big fancy $20 million in fines and restitution – somebody had to take a fall and why not the person who had conduct on the file??
We need answers – and they cannot come quick enough! But in the meantime, we can’t help but wonder why Elizabeth Chan or Liz Chan (or whatever she decides to call herself this time) cannot seem to keep a job…and we certainly wonder how she will act when she cannot hide behind the power of her badge any longer….
EDIT NOTE: Since we wrote the blog on November 3, 2016, sources confirm Ms. Chan left the CPABC offices in August of 2015. Where she works currently remains a mystery!
15 days ago I issued a challenge to a very quiet BCSC Chair Brenda Leong or ANY one of her spineless employees to answer some VERY direct questions including:
“Why isn’t one of the most powerful government agencies in BC, with unlimited funds to fight legal battles, suing us for defamation? After sending out letters from your lawyer to Peter Harris and Christopher Burke – Why are you not suing them for defamation after threatening to do so?”
We then issued 3 FORMAL CHALLENGES directly to you:
CHALLENGE #1: WE CHALLENGED YOU TO HAVE YOUR FLASHY LAWYERS SEND US A LETTER DEMANDING WE SHUT DOWN OUR BLOG FOR BEING INACCURATE AND/OR SLANDEROUS;
CHALLENGE #2: WE CHALLENGED YOU TO SUE US FOR DEFAMATION/LIBEL IF FOR ONE MOMENT OUR ALLEGATION OF BCSC STAFF ACTING IN BAD FAITH (WHEN MANIPULATING EVIDENCE IN THE PROCEEDINGS AGAINST US) IS NOT TRUE;
CHALLENGE #3: FINALLY, WE CHALLENGED YOU TO FORMALLY ADDRESS THE SETTLEMENT PROPOSAL (AS OUTLINED EARLIER IN THIS BLOG) THAT THE FCC AND DCF INVESTORS WOULD HAVE BENEFITED FROM.
We concluded at the end of the post that failing to reply back would lead to assumptions that the allegations we made against you to be VALID and NON-CONTESTED.
WE HAVE HAD NOTHING – COMPLETE AND UDDER SILENCE FROM THE BCSC!
Since we posted that blog post 14 days ago, we have discovered that Senior Investigator Elizabeth Chan was no longer employed by the BCSC as of April, 2014. This is the same Invesigator Chan that spoke to many of the former investors in both FCC and DCF. This is the same Investigator Chan that admitted on the stand during the hearing that she assumed evidence to be true during her investigation into our companies. This is the same Investigator Chan that prepared summary “grade 2” calculations that the Executive Director (Paul Bourque) relied upon when bringing allegations of a $5.45 million fraud against Wharram and his companies. This is the same Investigator Chan who sent emails to several of the former investors (BEFORE we got a day in court) pointing them to look at a bogus press release that was simply NOT true – that caused many of you to turn your back on Wharram. This is the same Investigator Chan who worked directly with Staff Litigator C. Paige Leggat in bringing their bogus case to a hearing room.
Now back to the DATE that Investigator Chan ceased being employed by the BCSC – our sources confirm she was done in April 2014. Do any of you remember when the hearing was? It was April 7 – 16, 2014. Elizabeth Chan ceased working for the BCSC in the same month as our hearing! It is NOT hard to connect the dots here:
STAFF LITIGATOR C. PAIGE LEGGAT – Resigned/Terminated in November 2014
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR PAUL BOURQUE – Resigned/Terminated in June 2016
TERESA MITCHELL-BANKS – Terminated in November 2015
INVESTIGATOR ELIZABETH CHAN – Resigned/Terminated in April 2014
It is NOT far fetched to believe that after the $5.45 million fraud allegation was essentially thrown out for LACK OF COMPELLING EVIDENCE – that the “higher ups” at the Commission were pissed off at the people completed the work. And remember their case was blown out of the water by Wharram who had never set foot in a hearing room before and had NO legal assistance. These paid professionals definitely had egg on their face as their case was VERY poorly investigated and tried in the hearing room.
NOW THINK ABOUT THIS FOR A MOMENT – These are the 4 KEY PEOPLE that worked (or made MAJOR decisions on our matter) – whom have all been terminated or have resigned. This is a disgrace at a very high level.
To ALL Former Investors – read between the lines here – these people are the ones that did not even look at the Settlement Offer that would have seen you participate in the Deercrest project – and NONE of then are currently working at the BCSC. The Deercrest property is a complete success with all units sold for very high numbers. The owners are making money. You would have made money!
And now we have these complete incompetent bozo’s at the Commission not responding to repeatedly requests for answers as to why they have conducted themselves this way! As I have said in other posts in this blog – you, as a former investors in FCC or DCF, have a right to these answers. They cannot ignore ALL of us or put us off forever. These people are NOT above the law and will NOT be able to hide behind the flimsy BC Securities Act forever.
Please contact them and ask them these five questions – do NOT take NO for an answer:
Thank you ALL for your support! We sincerely appreciate the kind words and encouragement.
As most of you know, we have recently encouraged former investors to contact the BCSC and ask them 5 questions that we think are very important for Staff at the Commission to answer. The answers to the questions (in the link above) are the right of everyone that was affected by the actions of both the Respondent and the Commission in our matter. We feel we have answered many of the questions asked of us by the former investors in this blog – IT IS NOW TIME THE COMMISSION DOES THE SAME THING!
Recently, we received a phone call from one of our former investors indicated that they had contacted the Commission in an attempt to get answers to their questions. To their shock and disbelief, the person they talked to at the BCSC said they would not comment on “past hearings” and then physically hung the phone up on them.
Is this what we want from these government appointed civil servants? They answer to the PEOPLE, not the other way around.
She did not get the name of the person she talked to – only that it was a woman. Please people – remember this – when you call them please make sure you get the particulars of the phone call including the time, date, and WHO you spoke to. IF you can, tape record the call or have someone in the room with you that can take notes of what is being said.
Additionally, you can email them at the firstname.lastname@example.org email account – and while you are at it, CC the email to all of the following (surely someone there can answer questions):
NOTE: Brenda Leong (at email@example.com ) is the Chair of the Commission – we have been emailing her for months now and she will not reply – so one can expect to NOT hear anything back from her. She is probably out spending her $500,000 per year salary or producing videos that promote vigilante justice!
If the BCSC does not reply back to you within 14 days, feel free to let us know. We think it is VERY important to document this all for various reasons – including the next election. Brenda Leong was appointed to her post by BC Premier Christy Clark -who, ironically enough, has failed to answer any questions about the BCSC in the numerous letters we have sent to her.