Investor Alerts

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Revised: Impersonation of Legitimate Company: PetroChina International Co., Ltd.
by FCNB on 

The Financial and Consumer Services Commission is warning consumers to be aware of an apparent “spoofing” attempt by a scam artist claiming to be PetroChina International Co., Ltd. Spoofing, in the online world, is when someone sets up a fraudulent website (which may look substantially similar to a real company’s website) to obtain information in an effort to defraud.   

 

Please note that: PetroChina International Co., Ltd. is the legitimate grandparent company of PetroChina International (Canada) Trading Ltd., which conducts business in Canada. In addition, PetroChina International Co., Ltd is a subsidiary of PetroChina Company Limited (the same name being used by the “spoofers”), whose stock is traded on the Shanghai, Hong Kong and New York Stock Exchanges respectively.

 

The scammers appear to be using a ‘spoofed’ website to contact New Brunswickers and solicit an investment relating to crude oil exports. They are also reportedly contacting individuals via telephone asking them to invest. 

 

The fraudulent website in this situation is substantially similar to the real website of PetroChina International Co., Ltd. however, it is named PetroChina Company Limited. Due to the extreme similarities in name and website content, investors are urged to ensure they are dealing with the legitimate company before conducting any business.

 

The legitimate company does not conduct operations in Canada except through its subsidiaries and does not solicit investments relating to crude oil exports. The spoofers have no connection to the companies PetroChina Company Limited, PetroChina International Co., Ltd or PetroChina International (Canada) Trading Ltd.

 

Anyone who has been approached to invest in PetroChina Company Limited is asked to contact the FCNB toll-free at 1-866-933-2222, or through the FCNB website.

 

Investors are also encouraged to contact the FCNB if they have any concerns about unsolicited investment opportunities or about the legitimacy of an investment opportunity. Being an informed investor is the best defense against investment fraud. New Brunswickers are encouraged to become informed investors by using FCNB’s free online resources.


13-01-17

 

Media Contact:

Sara Wilson, Communications, 506 643-7045 or 1 866 933-2222. sara.wilson@fcnb.ca  


The Financial and Consumer Services Commission has the mandate to protect consumers and enhance public confidence in the financial and consumer marketplace through the provision of regulatory and educational services. It is responsible for the administration and enforcement of Provincial legislation that regulates the following sectors:  securities, insurance, pensions, credit unions, caisses populaires, trust and loan companies, co-operatives, and a wide range of other consumer legislation. It is an independent Crown Corporation funded by the regulatory fees and assessments paid by the regulated sectors.  For access to our online educational tools and resources, please visit www.fcnb.ca


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Investor Alert: Market ban sought against NB man for fraud in Saskatchewan
by FCNB on 


The Financial and Consumer Services Commission (FCNB) is seeking a market ban order against Fred Louis Sebastian based on a recent decision of the Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority of Saskatchewan to impose sanctions and restrictions on him. Sebastian now lives in Ludlow, New Brunswick.


The Saskatchewan hearing panel found that Sebastian defrauded an elderly investor in that province by making exaggerated claims regarding the potential for profit in a particular investment. He obtained a significant sum of money from the investor, but the panel found that he had no intention of actually investing the funds on her behalf. Also, he was not registered to solicit or sell investments in the province. Selling investments and making promises regarding returns on investments is a breach of the Securities Act, both in Saskatchewan and New Brunswick. In addition, Sebastian had been banned in Saskatchewan in 1981 from trading in the securities of a particular issuer.


“The Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority of Saskatchewan investigated Mr. Sebastian’s recent conduct and wanted to interview him about his dealings with an elderly woman but they discovered he was living here in New Brunswick,” explained Jake van der Laan, Director of Enforcement with the FCNB. “The finding of fraud in Saskatchewan and the longstanding regulatory intervention against Mr. Sebastian has led the FCNB here to seek market bans in New Brunswick to prevent him from causing harm to investors in our province.”


One of the first steps a consumer should take when approached with any investment opportunity is to ensure that the person they are dealing with is registered to sell investments in the province.

 

“FCNB has online resources to help investors check an adviser’s registration status and tips on how to choose an investment adviser, but confirming registration is only the first step,” said van der Laan. “Successful investing requires the skill and experience to understand the risks and potential rewards involved in a given investment. This is particularly true of investments promoted outside registered investment dealers.”


Investors are urged to contact the FCNB at 1-866-933-2222 (toll-free) or through the FCNB website if they have any concerns about unsolicited investment opportunities or about the legitimacy of an investment opportunity.

 

10-12-15


Media Contact:

Communications, Financial and Consumer Services Commission

506-643-7045 or 1-866-933-2222, media@fcnb.ca.


The Financial and Consumer Services Commission has the mandate to protect consumers and enhance public confidence in the financial and consumer marketplace through the provision of regulatory and educational services. It is responsible for the administration and enforcement of provincial legislation that regulates the following sectors:  securities, insurance, pensions, credit unions, caisses populaires, trust and loan companies, co-operatives, and a wide range of other consumer legislation. It is an independent Crown Corporation funded by the regulatory fees and assessments paid by the regulated sectors.

   

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Investor Alert - Cease Trade Order Granted Against James Stuart Adams and A25 Gold Producers
by FCNB on 

A panel of the Financial and Consumer Services Tribunal has issued a cease trade order against A25 Gold Producers Corp. and James Stuart Adams for violations of the Securities Act.

The order was issued following a recent hearing before the tribunal. It reciprocates an order previously granted by the Ontario Securities Commission, in which A25 Gold Producers Corp. and Adams admitted to selling securities from Ontario through unregistered trading and illegal distributions to an investor in Canada and investors in Europe. There has been no allegation that any New Brunswick resident invested money with the corporation or Adams.

The order requires that the trading in any securities or derivatives of A25 Gold Producers Corp. cease permanently.  It also permanently prohibits the corporation from trading in securities or derivatives, acquiring securities, or becoming or acting as a registrant, mutual fund manager or promoter.  The order also requires Adams to resign all positions that he holds as a director or officer of any issuer, and prohibits Adams from trading or acquiring securities for five years.  Adams is also ordered not to act as a registrant, mutual fund manager, or a promoter, until March 5, 2020.

A25 Gold Producers Corp. was incorporated in British Columbia and operated out of Toronto. Adams was president of the corporation and is also the director of Touchstone International Business Services (New Brunswick) Ltd., a company registered in New Brunswick.

The order, and the reasons for the decision, is available online.  

The Financial and Consumer Services Commission (FCNB) has the mandate to protect consumers and enhance public confidence in the financial and consumer marketplace through the provision of regulatory and educational services. Being an informed investor is the best defence against investment fraud. New Brunswickers are encouraged to become informed investors by using FCNB’s free online resources.  

Hearing from New Brunswickers about suspicious financial and investment activity early is integral to combatting fraud. Please contact FCNB at 1 866 933-2222 for more information, to make a complaint or to express other related concerns.

Media Contact: Communications, 506 643-7045 or 1 866 933-2222. media@fcnb.ca 

The Financial and Consumer Services Commission has the mandate to protect consumers and enhance public confidence in the financial and consumer marketplace through the provision of regulatory and educational services. It is responsible for the administration and enforcement of Provincial legislation that regulates the following sectors:  securities, insurance, pensions, credit unions, caisses populaires, trust and loan companies, co-operatives, and a wide range of other consumer legislation. It is an independent Crown Corporation funded by the regulatory fees and assessments paid by the regulated sectors.  For access to our online educational tools and resources, please visit www.fcnb.ca


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Investor Alert – OneTwoTrade.com and EveryOption.com
by FCNB on 

The Financial and Consumer Services Commission (FCNB) is warning New Brunswickers to be aware of investment solicitations by OneTwoTrade.com and EveryOption.com.

 

“We were recently advised by a resident that they had invested with OneTwoTrade.com and EveryOption.com,”said Jake van der Laan, Director of Enforcement with FCNB. “Unfortunately, by the time the information reached us, the investor had already lost a significant amount of money,” said Jake van der Laan. “Investors need to be aware of the risks associated with dealing with off-shore and non-registered dealers. Once the money is sent outside of Canada it is virtually impossible to recover.”

 

These companies are not registered to sell or to receive investments from New Brunswickers, appear to be based off-shore, and purportedly use multiple names. The website appears to be inaccurate with respect to the companies’ registered status and the types of returns investors can expect.   Warnings have been issued internationally from places such as British Columbia, Ontario, the United Kingdom and Greece.

 

The companies market themselves as offering binary options. Binary options are similar to bets on whether the value of an asset will increase or decrease in a fixed – and often very short – period of time. Buying them may put any money invested at significant risk.

 

People can verify online if a company or individual is registered to sell investments in the province.

 

“New Brunswickers who have been approached by either of these companies or other unregistered companies soliciting investments are encouraged to contact us immediately,” said van der Laan.

 

Investors are urged to contact FCNB at 1 866 933-2222 (toll-free) or via their website if they have any concerns about the legitimacy of the investment opportunity. The key is for investors to be informed so they can protect their hard earned money by spending smart and spending safe.

 

October is Investor Education Month and FCNB has free, online resources, programs and tools to help investors be more financially informed and avoid the pitfalls and scams that may threaten their financial success.


08-10-2015


Media Contact:

Sara Wilson, communications, 506 643-7045 or 1 866 933-2222. sara.wilson@fcnb.ca 


The Financial and Consumer Services Commission has the mandate to protect consumers and enhance public confidence in the financial and consumer marketplace through the provision of regulatory and educational services. It is responsible for the administration and enforcement of Provincial legislation that regulates the following sectors:  securities, insurance, pensions, credit unions, caisses populaires, trust and loan companies, co-operatives, and a wide range of other consumer legislation. It is an independent Crown Corporation funded by the regulatory fees and assessments paid by the regulated sectors.  For access to our online educational tools and resources, please visit www.fcnb.ca

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Investor Alert - Ecovexco
by FCNB on 

The Financial and Consumer Services Commission (FCNB) is warning the public to be aware of investment solicitations by Ecovexco Investment Group, a company that has been advertising a ‘no risk’ investment opportunity in newspapers across Canada.

 

The advertisements apparently promise unrealistically high returns on investments in complex and high-risk markets. The company is purportedly operating out of North Carolina and/or the United Kingdom and is not registered to sell investments in New Brunswick.

 

“Before making any investment, you should research it thoroughly, including checking the registration of any person or company offering the product,” said Jake van der Laan, Director of Enforcement with FCNB. “Markets can be volatile and high returns with no risk are unrealistic. Also, once money is sent overseas, it is virtually impossible to recover.”

 

Investors are urged to contact FCNB if they have any concerns at all about the legitimacy of the investment opportunity. The key is for investors to be informed so they can spend smart and spend safe. FCNB has free, online resources, programs and tools to help investors be more financially informed and avoid the pitfalls and scams that may threaten their financial success.

 

To date FCNB is not aware of advertisements placed by Ecovexco in New Brunswick. This investor alert is released based on alerts posted by the Ontario and Manitoba securities commissions.

 

The public is encouraged to contact FCNB at 1 866 933-2222 (toll-free) or via their website if they’ve been contacted by Ecovexco or have seen its advertisements or to get further information, to make a complaint or to express investment or consumer related concerns.


Media Contact:

Sara Wilson, communications, 506 643-7045 or 1 866 933-2222. sara.wilson@fcnb.ca 

 

The Financial and Consumer Services Commission has the mandate to protect consumers and enhance public confidence in the financial and consumer marketplace through the provision of regulatory and educational services. It is responsible for the administration and enforcement of Provincial legislation that regulates the following sectors:  securities, insurance, pensions, credit unions, caisses populaires, trust and loan companies, co-operatives, and a wide range of other consumer legislation. It is an independent Crown Corporation funded by the regulatory fees and assessments paid by the regulated sectors. 

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Investor Alert – Asia Pacific Gold Mining Investment Ltd.
by FCNB on 


The Financial and Consumer Services Commission (FCNB) is warning investors to exercise caution before purchasing shares of Asia Pacific Gold Mining Investment Ltd. (“APGMI”).  GXG Markets, a European securities market, has suspended trading in shares of APGMI pending certain questions regarding the status of the company and its share structure.

 

While APGMI is incorporated in New Brunswick, it appears that the bulk of the present trading in its shares is currently being effected in the secondary market by a controlling shareholder not resident in New Brunswick.  Further, the trades in question do not appear to involve New Brunswick investors.  FCNB cautions all investors to confirm that a proposed purchase of APGMI shares, or any other security, is compliant with the securities laws in the investor’s home jurisdiction before proceeding with the trade.


For access to our online educational tools and resources, please visit www.fcnb.ca

 

The Financial and Consumer Services Commission has the mandate to protect consumers and enhance public confidence in the financial and consumer marketplace through the provision of regulatory and educational services. It is responsible for the administration and enforcement of Provincial legislation that regulates the following sectors:  securities, insurance, pensions, credit unions, caisses populaires, trust and loan companies, co-operatives, and a wide range of other consumer legislation. It is an independent Crown Corporation funded by the regulatory fees and assessments paid by the regulated sectors.  

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Investor Alert - New Brunswickers Advised to Use Caution if Approached to Invest With NRG Binary
by FCNB on 

New Brunswickers are advised to be cautious if approached by NRG Binary, a business seeking investments in binary options. Staff of the Financial and Consumer Services Commission (FCNB) have filed a statement of allegationscommencing enforcement proceedings against MHGG Tech Solutions Ltd. and NRG Capital Ltd., two companies associated with NRG Binary, alleging violations of the Securities Act.  

“One of our staff members was solicited to invest by NRG Binary after providing contact information online as part of a previous investigation,” said Jake van der Laan, Director of the Enforcement division. “Investors should be aware that once you’ve spent money in response to an online or telephone solicitation, it usually ends up outside Canada and is virtually impossible to recover.”


MHGG Tech Solutions Ltd. is based in London, England while NRG Capital (Cyprus) Ltd. is based in Cyprus. These entities are not registered to sell investments in New Brunswick. As well, representatives of MHGG Tech made representations as to the future value of the investments; a breach of the Securities Act.


“If approached by an unknown or unsolicited business to invest your money, you must proceed with caution. Be critical, look for red flags and check registration before making any decisions” said van der Laan. “Scam artists are always looking for an easy way to make money, and with enhanced technology, scams are becoming more sophisticated. Working with an investment adviser you know and trust is important when making investment decisions, as they will work with you to help you achieve your financial goals.”


The key to protecting your family’s financial future is to be informed so you can spend smart and spend safe. FCNB has free, online resources, programs and tools to help you make decisions to get further ahead financially and avoid the pitfalls and scams that may threaten your financial success.

 

The public may contact the commission at 1 866 933-2222 (toll-free) or via their website www.fcnb.ca to get further information, to make a complaint or to express investment or consumer related concerns.

 

Media Contact:

Sara Wilson, Communications, 506 643-7045 or 1 866 933-2222. sara.wilson@fcnb.ca


The Financial and Consumer Services Commission has the mandate to protect consumers and enhance public confidence in the financial and consumer marketplace through the provision of regulatory and educational services. It is responsible for the administration and enforcement of Provincial legislation that regulates the following sectors:  securities, insurance, pensions, credit unions, caisses populaires, trust and loan companies, co-operatives, and a wide range of other consumer legislation. It is an independent Crown Corporation funded by the regulatory fees and assessments paid by the regulated sectors.  

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Investor Alert – Karatbars Investment Program
by FCNB on 

New Brunswickers are being warned by the Financial and Consumer Services Commission to be cautious when dealing with an investment program linked to Karatbars International GmbH, a company based in Germany.

 

This program has previously been the subject of a similar warning from the Quebec securities regulator:

http://www.lautorite.qc.ca/en/press-releases-2014-corpo.html_2014_alert-karatbars.html

as well as the British Columbia Securities Commission:

http://www.bcsc.bc.ca/Enforcement/Investment_Caution_List/Karatbars_International_GmbH/

 

Karatbars International is not registered to sell investments in New Brunswick.

 

For more information on being an informed investor and other financial and consumer resources, visit www.fcnb.ca.

 

This alert was based on an investor alert by the Autorité des Marchés Financiers.

 

Media Contact:

Sara Wilson, Communications and Media Relations Specialist, 506 643-7045 or 1 866 933-2222. sara.wilson@fcnb.ca 


The Financial and Consumer Services Commission regulates, educates and protects consumers and investors from unfair, improper or fraudulent practices. It brings together regulatory authorities for securities, insurance, pensions, consumer affairs, co-operatives, credit unions, caisses populaires, and loan and trust companies. It is an independent Crown Corporation self-funded by the fees and assessments paid by the regulated sectors.

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Investor Alert - Warning about investment solicitations by telephone
by FCNB on 

New Brunswick residents are receiving an increased volume of investment solicitations from companies that are not registered to sell investments in the province, warns the Financial and Consumer Services Commission (FCNB).


The enforcement division of FCNB is concerned about reports that two companies, MagellantradingFX and Magellan Trading Group, have been cold calling New Brunswickers and soliciting their investments.  These companies are not registered to sell investments in the province. They appear to be located offshore and claim to specialize in foreign exchange, options and futures trading, all investments that traditionally are high risk and not for the average investor.


“Before making any investment, it’s important to check to make sure that both the company and the salesperson are registered to sell securities in the province,” said Jake van der Laan, director of enforcement with FCNB. “No matter where they are located, persons or companies selling investments to New Brunswick residents are required to be registered with us, unless they qualify for specific exemptions.”


“Once you’ve sent money overseas, it becomes very difficult to get your money back,” said van der Laan. “Taking precautions, such as checking registration before investing, could help save your financial future.”


There are many illegitimate entities out there looking to convince people to invest with them.  They often try to lure investors by:

 

  • using company names which sound official and that sound similar to legitimate companies;
  • using professional looking websites, which appear on their face, to be very legitimate; and,
  •  using the method of cold calling which is the sales technique of approaching potential investors  who have no expectation of the contact,  typically by phone, but which can also be done by email or through social networking sites.
  •  

It is important to use caution when approached to purchase investments from an unknown or an unfamiliar person or company.  There are restrictions on the types of telephone solicitations allowed in New Brunswick.


New Brunswickers who have been approached by these companies or other unregistered companies soliciting investments are encouraged to contact FCNB immediately through FCNB.ca.


Residents can use the Registration Search Tool on the FCNB.ca website to check if a person or company is registered. The site also has resources and information to help New Brunswickers make informed financial and consumer choices.

________________________________________

The Financial and Consumer Services Commission provides protection to consumers and investors from unfair, improper or fraudulent practices. It brings together regulatory authorities for securities, insurance, pensions, consumer affairs, co-operatives, credit unions, caisses populaires, and loan and trust companies. It is an independent Crown Corporation self-funded by the fees and assessments paid by the regulated sectors.

 

MEDIA CONTACT:
Sara Wilson, communications, 506 643 7045,
sara.wilson@fcnb.ca

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Investor Alert - Do not make investments with unregistered firms such as Options Area
by FCNB on 

New Brunswickers are warned to exercise caution before making any investment with a person or company who is not registered with the Financial and Consumer Services Commission (FCNB) to sell or trade investments in the province.

“Most investors in New Brunswick decide to purchase investments through a registered financial institution that is familiar to them, or from someone they know personally who is employed at a registered firm,” said Director of Enforcement for the FCNB Jake van der Laan,. “It is generally a very bad idea to invest with a company that contacts you out of the blue to invest in something you don’t fully understand.”

The enforcement division of FCNB is currently concerned about an unregistered company that uses the business name Options Area. A New Brunswick resident recently forwarded $10,000 to this company. Even though the salesperson stated they were calling from Toronto, the company is not registered in New Brunswick, which  makes it extremely difficult to tell where they are actually located.  

New Brunswickers who have been approached by Options Area or other unregistered companies soliciting investments are encouraged to contact FCNB immediately. People can verify if a company or individual is registered on the FCNB’s website: http://fcnb.ca/CheckRegistration.  

Options Area purports to sell binary options. The FCNB issued an investor alert about Binary Options in February. Binary options are similar to bets on whether the value of an asset will increase or decrease in a fixed - and often very short - period of time. Buying them may put any money invested at significant risk.

Being an informed investor is your best defence against investment fraud. Learn how to protect yourself by taking advantage of the resources available on FCNB’s website, which provides details about boiler room operations and other common investment scams.

The Financial and Consumer Services Commission regulates, educates and protects consumers and investors from unfair, improper or fraudulent practices. It brings together regulatory authorities for securities, insurance, pensions, consumer affairs, co-operatives, credit unions, caisses populaires, and loan and trust companies. It is an independent Crown Corporation self-funded by the fees and assessments paid by the regulated sectors.

26-06-14

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