BUSINESS

Former Bay Street Lawyer Faces $2.7M Fine In Insider Trading Case

08/25/2015 06:24 EDT | Updated 08/25/2016 05:59 EDT
TORONTO — Securities regulators have imposed fines of more than $2.7 million along with other sanctions in an insider trading case involving former Bay Street lawyer Mitchell Finkelstein, his longtime friend Paul Azeff and three others.

The penalties announced Tuesday follow a decision in March when a panel of the Ontario Securities Commission found that Finkelstein provided tips on three major deals between 2004 and 2007 while he was working for the legal firm Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP.

The commission said the recipient of the information was Azeff, a friend of Finkelstein dating to their university days who worked for CIBC in Montreal as an investment adviser.

The commission said Azeff fed the information to one of his friends, Korin Bobrow, who worked at CIBC, and both either bought shares of the target companies for themselves, their family members or clients.

The regulator said they also told other friends, who also bought shares for themselves, family members and clients.

Among other things, the commission has ordered Finkelstein to pay administrative penalties of $450,000 along with $125,000 towards the cost of the commission's investigation and hearing. He is also barred for trading in any securities, other than in his own registered accounts for 10 years and is permanently banned from becoming a director or officer of a public company.

Azeff and Bobrow were given similar bans, with Azeff being fined $750,000 and ordered to pay $175,000 in costs, while Bobrow was handed a $300,000 administrative penalty and costs of $125,000.

In addition, Azeff was ordered to disgorge to the commission $49,996 in profits and Bobrow $19,217.

Two others involved in the case, Jeffrey Miller and Man Kin Cheng, also known as Francis Cheng, were fined $450,000 and $200,000, respectively. Miller was also ordered to pay $50,000 in costs and to disgorge $24,485 in profits, while Cheng faces an additional $25,000 in costs.

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