July 14, 2017 / 2:36 PM / a month ago

Canadian regulator says Sino-Forest misled investigators

FILE PHOTO - The company logo of Sino-Forest is displayed at the entrance of its office in Hong Kong June 8, 2011.Xavier Ng

(Reuters) - The Ontario Securities Commission ruled on Friday that failed timber firm Sino-Forest and many of its top executives including the former CEO misled investigators probing an accounts scandal.

The regulator said the executives "engaged in deceitful or dishonest conduct" that they knew constituted fraud and violated the securities law.

The OSC said former CEO Allen Chan and executives Albert Ip, Alfred Hung and George Ho overstated the company's assets and revenue. (bit.ly/2tTu9FZ)

The Chinese forestry company said back in 2011 that Chan had resigned as chairman and CEO and that it had placed the three senior employees on administrative leave following an internal review. (reut.rs/2tQCMT6)

Sino-Forest became representative of a spate of accounting scandals that had tainted the image of Chinese companies listed in North America.

The accusations had prompted trading halts, delistings, lawsuits and regulatory probes in both the United States and Canada.

Reporting by John Benny in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty

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