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CIRO Hearing Panel accepts settlement agreement with George Yamamoto

November 7, 2023 (Toronto, Ontario) – A settlement hearing in the matter of George Yamamoto (the “Respondent”) was held electronically by videoconference on October 25, 2023 in Toronto, Ontario before a three-member Hearing Panel of the Ontario District Hearing Committee of the Canadian Investment Regulatory Organization (“CIRO”).

The Hearing Panel accepted the settlement agreement dated August 24, 2023 (the “Settlement Agreement”), between Staff of CIRO and the Respondent as a consequence of which the following sanctions were imposed on the Respondent:

  • The Respondent shall be permanently prohibited from conducting securities related business in any capacity while in the employ of or associated with any Dealer Member of CIRO registered as a mutual fund dealer, pursuant to section 24.1.1(e) of MFDA By-law No.1 (now Mutual Fund Dealer Rule 7.4.1.1(e));
  • a fine in the amount of $100,000; and
  • costs in the amount of $5,000.

In the Settlement Agreement, the Respondent admitted that:

  1. between November 2018 and August 2020, he was aware that he was or would be named as the recipient of legacies in the wills of clients A and B, which gave rise to conflicts or potential conflicts of interest that the Respondent failed to disclose to the Member or otherwise address by the exercise of responsible business judgment influenced only by the best interests of the clients, contrary to the Member’s policies and procedures and MFDA Rules 2.1.4, 2.1.1 and 1.1.2 (as it relates to Rule 2.5.1) (now Mutual Fund Dealer Rules 2.1.4, 2.1.1, 1.1.2 and 2.5.1);
  2. between July 29, 2020 and August 6, 2020, he solicited monies from clients A and B, which gave rise to conflicts or potential conflicts of interest that the Respondent failed to disclose to the Member or otherwise address by the exercise of responsible business judgment influenced only by the best interests of the clients, contrary to the Member’s policies and procedures and MFDA Rules 2.1.4, 2.1.1 and 1.1.2 (as it relates to Rule 2.5.1) (now Mutual Fund Dealer Rules 2.1.4, 2.1.1, 1.1.2 and 2.5.1); and
  3. on or about August 7, 2020, he disclosed information regarding the business and affairs of clients A and B to client A’s son, without the consent of the clients, thereby failing to maintain the clients’ information in confidence, contrary to the Member’s policies and procedures and MFDA Rules 2.1.3, 2.1.1 and 1.1.2 (as it relates to Rule 2.5.1) (now Mutual Fund Dealer Rules 2.1.3, 2.1.1, 1.1.2 and 2.5.1).

A copy of the Settlement Agreement is available on the MFDA website at www.mfda.ca. During the period described in the Settlement Agreement, the Respondent carried on business in the Toronto, Ontario area.

The Canadian Investment Regulatory Organization (CIRO) is the national self-regulatory organization that oversees all investment dealers, mutual fund dealers and trading activity on Canada’s debt and equity marketplaces. CIRO is committed to the protection of investors, providing efficient and consistent regulation, and building Canadians’ trust in financial regulation and the people managing their investments. For more information, visit www.ciro.ca.

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