July 11, 2018 / 2:27 PM / 4 months ago

Ontario regulator says Sino Forest executives have to pay C$64 million

(Reuters) - Sino Forest Corp’s top executives have to pay the Ontario Securities Commission about C$64 million ($48.92 million), the regulator said, a year after it alleged the company of overstating its assets.

The regulator also permanently prohibited former chief executive officer, Allen Chan, who will pay C$60 million, and executives Albert Ip, Alfred Hung, George Ho and Simon Yeung from trading or buying securities.

The regulator’s decision comes after the Ontario Superior Court found earlier in March that Chan engaged in fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, and negligence. The court awarded plaintiffs $2.63 billion in a civil case against Sino Forest.

The executives also have to pay an administrative penalty of more than C$11 million and costs of about C$5 million, the regulator said in a statement dated July 9, but released on Wednesday.

Sino-Forest was a publicly traded company listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange, before short seller Muddy Waters LLC published a report in 2011 accusing the company of being a Ponzi scheme riddled with fraud, theft and undisclosed related-party transactions.

Between 2007 and 2010, the company raised more than $2.1 billion and C$800 million in Canada’s debt and capital markets.

Sino-Forest’s collapse became the symbol for a series of offshore-listed Chinese firms accused of similar fraud that subsequently collapsed, including most recently China Huishan Dairy Holdings (6863.HK).

Reporting by John Benny in Bengaluru; Editing by Bernard Orr

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