01/27/2012 01:18 EST | Updated 03/27/2012 05:12 EDT

Sino-Forest keeps OSC in dark about committee’s probe: Report

VANCOUVER - Sino-Forest Corp. (TSX:TRE) has failed to respond to information requests by the Ontario Securities Commission, according to a Globe and Mail report.

It cites a senior OSC investigator as saying the timber company has not yet provided information about its assets and relationships with key business partners in China.

Wayne Vanderlaan said in a sworn affidavit that Sino-Forest has not replied to requests made Dec. 7, 2011 regarding claims that the company’s “cash balances, timber assets, book values and revenues” were “verified” by an independent committee of directors.

Vanderlaan told the Globe that the OSC letter asked the independent committee “a number of questions” about Sino-Forest’s statement that the committee’s review verified these assets, but the OSC has not received specific responses.

The OSC also sent a letter to the counsel for the independent committee on Dec. 22, requesting specific information on relationships between Sino-Forest, timber suppliers and brokers in China who sell Sino-Forest’s trees, called authorized intermediaries.

More than a month later, said Vanderlaan, the OSC still hasn't received responses to these questions.

Sino-Forest has been accused of exaggerating its sales and assets and saw its share price plummet after those allegations first made by short-seller Muddy Waters.

The allegations by the short-seller _ an investor who profits when a stock falls _ prompted the OSC to launch its own investigation and later to refer the case to the RCMP for a criminal investigation.