MFDA Notice of Hearing

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201849

IN THE MATTER OF A DISCIPLINARY HEARING PURSUANT TO SECTIONS 20 AND 24 OF BY-LAW NO. 1 OF THE MUTUAL FUND DEALERS ASSOCIATION OF CANADA

David Michael Gordon

AMENDED1 NOTICE OF HEARING

NOTICE is hereby given that a first appearance will take place by teleconference before a hearing panel of the Pacific Regional Council (“Hearing Panel”) of the Mutual Fund Dealers Association of Canada (“MFDA”) in the hearing room at the MFDA offices, located at 650 West Georgia Street, Suite 1220, Vancouver, British Columbia on July 24, 2018 at 10:00 a.m. (Pacific), or as soon thereafter as the hearing can be held, concerning a disciplinary proceeding commenced by the MFDA against David Michael Gordon (“Respondent”). The Hearing on the Merits will take place in Vancouver, British Columbia at a time and venue to be announced.

 

AMENDED on the 24th day of May, 2019.

DATED: Apr 23, 2018

"Sarah Rickard"

Sarah Rickard

Director of Regional Councils

Mutual Fund Dealers Association of Canada
121 King St. West, Suite 1000
Toronto, ON M5H 3T9
Telephone: 416-945-5143
Fax: 416-361-9781
E-mail: corporatesecretary@mfda.ca



NOTICE is further given that the MFDA alleges the following violations of the By-laws, Rules or Policies of the MFDA:

Allegation #1: Between November 2006 and May 2016, the Respondent misrepresented, failed to fully and adequately explain, or omitted to explain the risks and benefits of investing in precious metals sector funds to clients, thereby failing to ensure that his recommendations were suitable for the clients and in keeping with their investment objectives, contrary to MFDA Rules 2.2.1 and 2.1.1.

Allegation #2: Between November 2006 and May 2016, the Respondent failed to ensure that an investment recommendation he made to two clients to invest in precious metals sector funds was suitable having regard to the clients’ relevant Know-Your-Client factors including their age, employment status, investment objectives, investment knowledge, risk tolerance, and time horizon, and the risks associated with concentrating their investment portfolio in precious metals sector funds, contrary to MFDA Rules 2.2.1 and 2.1.1.

PARTICULARS

NOTICE is further given that the following is a summary of the facts alleged and intended to be relied upon by the MFDA at the hearing:

Registration History

  1. The Respondent has been registered in the securities industry since 1992.
  2. From November 9, 2006 to May 13, 2016 when he resigned, the Respondent was registered in British Columbia as a mutual fund salesperson (now known as a dealing representative) with FundEX Investments Inc. (“FundEX”), a Member of the MFDA.
  3. The Respondent is not currently registered in the securities industry in any capacity.
  4. At all material times, the Respondent conducted business in the Campbell River, British Columbia area.

The Gold Strategy

  1. Between about November 2006 and May 2016, the Respondent recommended an investment strategy to clients, whereby the clients would purchase precious metals (predominantly, gold) sector mutual funds (the “Gold Strategy”).
  2. In the course of recommending the Gold Strategy to clients, the Respondent represented that, among other things:
    1. the price of gold and other precious metals was poised to increase due to an imminent decline in the stock market; or
    2. investing in gold and precious metals sector funds was a safe investment, and a safer alternative to investing in the stock market generally.
  3. The Respondent serviced the mutual fund accounts of approximately 290 clients. The Gold Strategy resulted in approximately 190 clients holding investments which were concentrated in precious metals sector funds.
  4. Based upon the Respondent’s recommendations, most of the assets held by the 190 clients were invested in the BMG Bullion Fund. The BMG Bullion Fund is currently rated high risk.
  5. Approximately half of the 190 clients with investments concentrated in precious metals sector funds were seniors.
  6. The Gold Strategy resulted in the clients holding investments which were concentrated in precious metals sector funds. As of April 2, 2015:
    1. approximately 19% of the Respondent’s clients held 50% to 100% of their investments in precious metals sector funds; and
    2. approximately 36% of the Respondent’s clients held 25% to 50% of their investments in precious metals sector funds.
  1. 1011 The Respondent did not recommend that clients diversify their investment holdings.

The Respondent Failed to Assess Suitability on a Client-by-Client Basis

  1. The Respondent failed to consider, adequately or at all, whether his recommendations to engage in the Gold Strategy were suitable on a client-by-client basis, having regard to the essential KYC factors relevant to each individual client, prior to making the recommendations to the clients.
  2. The Respondent engaged in a standard practice of recommending that clients concentrate their investment holdings in precious metals sector funds, without regard to each client’s KYC information, based upon his views as to how these funds would perform.
  3. The Respondent failed to consider, adequately or at all, whether it was suitable for each client to hold non-diversified investments.

The Respondent Misrepresented the Risks of the Gold Strategy

  1. As described above, in the course of recommending the Gold Strategy to clients, the Respondent represented that, among other things, the price of gold and other precious metals were poised to increase dramatically, and investing in gold and precious metals sector funds was a relatively safe investment.
  2. The Respondent failed to fully and adequately explain, the risks and benefits of investing in precious metals sector funds, including the risk of holding non-diversified investments and the risk that Gold Strategy would not perform as he represented it would.
  3. To the extent that the Respondent explained some of the risks of investing in precious metals sector funds, he failed to provide a balanced presentation of the risks and minimized the risks when he described the funds.

Client A and B

  1. 1118. From November 2006 to June 2016, clients A and B were clients of FundEX and the Respondent was the Approved Person responsible for servicing their investment accounts at FundEX.
  2. 12.19. Clients A and B are spouses.
  3. 13.20. Since about 2007, clients A and B made monthly withdrawals from Registered Retirement Income Fund (“RRIF”) accounts they each held at FundEX.
  4. 14.21. Clients A and B also each held a Registered Retirements Savings Plan (“RRSP”) at FundEX.
  5. 15.22. In February 2009, the Respondent recommended that clients A and B implement the Gold Strategy. Based upon this advice, clients A and B sold their existing investments totaling $103,000 in their RRSP and RRIF accounts, and invested 50% of the monies in the BMG Bullion Fund and 50% of the monies in a money market fund.
  6. 16.23. At the time the Respondent recommended the Gold Strategy, clients A and B:
    1. were 68 years old and retired;
    2. had low investment knowledge;
    3. had limited net worth (less than $200,000);
    4. had limited income (less than $30,000 per year) and required their investment holdings to pay for living expenses; and
    5. had limited ability to withstand investment losses.
  7. 17.24. By virtue of the factors described above, clients A and B were vulnerable investors.
  8. 18.25. The Respondent did not discuss with clients A and B the risks associated with the Gold Strategy.
  9. 19.26. After clients A and B implemented the Gold Strategy, the clients began making monthly redemptions of the money market mutual fund in order to pay living expenses.
  10. 20.27. By January 2013, clients A and B had depleted their holdings of the money market fund through monthly withdrawals to pay living expenses and held only the BMG Bullion Fund in their accounts at FundEX.
  11. 21.28. After the money market holdings were depleted, clients A and B began making monthly redemptions of the BMG Bullion Fund in order to pay living expenses.
  12. 22.29. Notwithstanding that the Respondent was aware that clients A and B had depleted their holdings of the money market fund and were redeeming their holdings of the BMG Bullion Fund to pay living expenses, he did not recommend or otherwise discuss that the clients rebalance their accounts at FundEX.
  13. 23.30.Commencing in about May 2013, client B began emailing the Respondent and expressing concerns about the performance of the Gold Strategy. For example, on May 7, 2013, client B sent an e-mail to the Respondent stating:
    1. I was just wondering why my funds went down $4,245.57 from March 15 to April 15, was there a crash in my funds or something? At this rate I’ll be out of money very quickly. Could you please let me know.
  14. 24.31. The Respondent replied the same day and stated:
    1. Gold/silver/platinum dropped from April 6 to the April 15, 2013, then it has come back up about 60% of the drop…There is a split in prices between Paper Gold and Real gold. The experts believe it will bounce back to the $1500+, then work its way up over the year. We moved to the Real Gold because of all the problems in the world, and things are getting worse… Things are going to end badly (just when) and I want to have real assets, (gold/silver/platinum). Things can go real badly at anytime. I want to stay put for now and be patient… It will take a jump, problem is just when? The longer it goes the bigger the jump. We are heading for either major inflation or major financial adjustment. That is why the gold and silver. It is coming. [Emphasis added.]
  15. 25.32. On July 23, 2013, client B sent an e-mail to the Respondent stating:
    1. I just got my Transaction Confirmation and as of from May 15 to June 16th I have gone down $2,359.13 and [client A] has gone down $6,021.82 from May 1 to June 28th. At this rate we won’t have any money left in 10 months. Is there something we can do or are we still to hold out.
  16. 26.33. The Respondent responded on the same day and stated:
    1. On June 28, 2013 Gold/Silver bottom out and is now climbing. Problem is that it went too far up in 2011 then went too far down this year… The world problem (financially) just keep getting worse and worse. They keep printing money. The question is when will there be a lose (sic) in the US Dollar confidence…It is up again today and the Magic Technical point is $1350. It is $1342 right now. If it closes over $1350 the experts say things will take off. We have to stay put, it is happening. [Emphasis added.]
  17. 27.34. On November 22, 2014, client B sent an email to the Respondent stating:
    1. I was just wondering if there is anywhere else I can put my money as it is going down pretty fast…I haven’t got a heck of a lot left so it is kind of scary when it goes down so fast.
  18. 28.35. On November 25, 2014, the Respondent responded by email and stated:
    1. World GDP is dropping rapidly and heading for a recession. Which will lead to more money printing… Gold is a Currency... Problem has been the Silver dropped more. I know if you have time, it will come back. Problem is when? [Emphasis added.]
  19. 29.36. In this response e-mail dated November 25, 2014, the Respondent provided options for clients A and B to move their investments into Guaranteed Investment Certificates but advised client B that the “problem is interest rates are low and have not really changed in 5 years.”
  20. 30.37. Notwithstanding that the Respondent was aware of the concerns expressed by the clients with respect to the Gold Strategy, the Respondent did not recommend rebalancing their accounts, or provide investment alternatives to them until November 25, 2014.
  21. 31.38. In June 2016, clients A and B transferred their accounts out of FundEX.
  22. 32.39. In January 2017, clients A and B submitted a complaint with FundEX with respect to the Respondent’s handling of their accounts.

Client MB

  1. From November 2006 to June 2016, client MB was a client of FundEX and the Respondent was the Approved Person responsible for servicing her investment accounts at FundEX.
  2. On November 27, 2006, the Respondent recorded the following information on client MB’s New Client Application Form:
    1. Occupation: Retired;
    2. Income: $30,000 to $50,000;
    3. Net Worth: Over $200,000;
    4. Investment Knowledge: Fair (Low);
    5. Liquidity: 5+ years;
    6. Investment Objectives: Balanced; and
    7. Portfolio Risk Rating: 50% Low to Moderate and 50% Moderate.
  3. In February 2009, the Respondent recommended that client MB, implement the Gold Strategy. Based upon this advice, client MB redeemed $52,349 of the CI Global High Dividend Advantage Fund and purchased $52,349 of the BMG Bullion Fund.
  4. At the time the Respondent recommended the Gold Strategy, client MB:
    1. was 72 years old and retired;
    2. had low investment knowledge;
    3. wanted a safe and low risk investment;
    4. had limited income ($30,000 to $50,000 per year) and required her investment holdings to pay for living expenses; and
    5. had limited ability to withstand investment losses.
  5. The Respondent presented the BMG Bullion Fund to client MB as a low risk and safe investment and failed to explain the risks associated with investing in precious metals sector funds.
  6. On April 22, 2011, the Respondent updated client MB’s KYC information as follows:
    1. Occupation: Retired;
    2. Income: $50,001 to $70,000;
    3. Net Worth: Over $200,001;
    4. Investment Knowledge: Good (Moderate);
    5. Liquidity: 5 years and over
    6. Investment Objectives: Growth; and
    7. Portfolio Risk Rating: 50% Moderate, 30% Moderate to High, 20% High.
  7. In the April 22, 2011 KYC update, the Respondent failed to accurately record client MB’s investment knowledge and portfolio risk rating. Client MB states she had an actual Investment Knowledge of low but the Respondent Investment Knowledge was recorded as “Good (Moderate)”. Client MB states her actual Portfolio Risk Rating was 100% low but the Respondent recorded her Portfolio Risk Rating as “50% Moderate, 30% Moderate to High, 20% High”.
  8. On September 8, 2011, at the Respondent’s recommendation, client MB switched $50,000 from the CI Money Market Fund to the CI Signature Gold Fund.
  9. On September 11 and 19, 2012, at the Respondent’s recommendation, client MB switched a total of $50,000 from the CI Money Market Fund to the CI Signature Gold Fund. As a result, as of December 31, 2012, client MB held approximately 50% of her portfolio in precious metal sector funds.
  10. Between 2009 and 2012, client MB’s holding in precious metals sector funds in her portfolio increased from approximately 28% to 50%. The Respondent did not recommend that client MB rebalance her account to decrease the level of concentration.
  11. The Respondent failed to ensure that an investment recommendation he made to client MB to invest in precious metal sector funds was suitable having regard to the clients’ relevant Know-Your-Client factors including age, employment status, risk tolerance and ability to withstand investment losses.
  12. The Respondent failed to adequately explain the risks associated with concentrating client MB’s investment portfolio in precious metals sector funds.
  13. In June 2016, client MB transferred her account out of FundEX.
  14. Client MB suffered a loss of $18,000 as a result of the Respondent recommending the Gold Strategy.

Client SG

  1. From January 2012 to June 2016, client SG was a client of FundEX and the Respondent was the Approved Person responsible for servicing her investment accounts at FundEX.
  2. In February 2012, the Respondent recommended that client SG implement the Gold Strategy.
  3. On March 2, 2012, based upon the Respondent’s recommendation, client SG redeemed $35,000 of the CI Money Market Fund and invested $35,000 in the BMG Bullion Fund.
  4. On April 2, 2012, based on the Respondent’s recommendation, client SG invested an additional $20,000 in BMG Bullion Fund.
  5. The Respondent presented the BMG Bullion Fund to client SG as a low risk safe investment and failed to explain the risks associated with investing in precious metals mutual funds.
  6. At the time the Respondent recommended the Gold Strategy, client SG:
    1. was 55 years old;
    2. had very low investment knowledge;
    3. wanted low risk mutual funds;
    4. had limited net worth (under $200,000);
    5. had limited income (less than $30,000 per year); and
    6. had limited ability to withstand investment losses.
  7. Client SG told the Respondent she wanted low risk investments. The Respondent recorded her Portfolio Risk Rating as 30% Moderate, 30% Moderate to High and 40% High as a result the Respondent failed to accurately record client SG’s KYC information.
  8. As at December 31, 2012, approximately 59% of client SG’s portfolio at FundEX was invested in the BMG Bullion Fund.
  9. As at December 31, 2014, as a result of a redemption in the BMG Bullion Fund, approximately 39% of client SG’s portfolio at FundEX was invested in the BMG Bullion Fund and that level was maintained until client SG transferred her accounts out of FundEX in June 2016.
  10. The Respondent failed to ensure that an investment recommendation he made to client SG to invest in precious metals sector funds was suitable having regard to the clients’ relevant Know-Your-Client factors including risk tolerance, investment objectives and ability to withstand investment losses.
  11. Client SG suffered a loss of $17,830 as a result of the Respondent recommending the Gold Strategy.
  12. On May 22, 2018, FundEX fully compensated client SG for her losses.

Client TF

  1. From 2007 to June 2016, client TF was a client of FundEX and the Respondent was the Approved Person responsible for servicing her investment accounts at FundEX.
  2. On March 8, 2007, client TF’s New Client Application Form recorded her KYC information as:
    1. Occupation: Self Employed
    2. Income: Less than $30,000
    3. Net Worth: Over $200,000
    4. Investment Knowledge: Fair (Low)
    5. Liquidity: 5+ years
    6. Investment Objectives: Growth
    7. Portfolio Risk Rating: 20% Low, 20% Low to Moderate, 20% Moderate, 20% Moderate to High and 20% high
  3. In March 2009, the Respondent recommended that client TF implement the Gold Strategy.
  4. On March 20, 2009, based on the Respondent’s recommendation, client TF invested $30,000 in the BMG Bullion Fund.
  5. The Respondent presented the BMG Bullion Fund to client TF as a low risk safe investment and failed to explain the risks associated with investing in precious metals sector funds.
  6. As a result of the March 20, 2009 purchase, FundEX compliance staff emailed the Respondent to query the suitability of the trade.
  7. On March 25, 2009, the Respondent responded to FundEX compliance stating he was going to provide a new KYC Form for client TF.
  8. On November 2, 2010, based on the Respondent’s recommendation, client TF invested an additional $15,000 in the BMG Bullion Fund.
  9. On November 3, 2010, FundEX compliance staff emailed the Respondent to query the suitability of the trade.
  10. On November 17, 2010, the Respondent provided FundEX with a KYC Update Form that recorded client TF’s risk tolerance as, 50% Moderate and 50% Moderate to High.
  11. At the time the Respondent recommended the Gold Strategy, client TF:
    1. was 53 years old;
    2. had very low investment knowledge;
    3. wanted low risk mutual funds;
    4. had limited income (less than $30,000 per year); and
    5. had limited ability to withstand investment losses.
  12. In June 2016 when client TF transferred her accounts out of FundEX, approximately 48% of her money was invested in the BMG Bullion Fund.
  13. The Respondent failed to ensure that an investment recommendation he made to client TF to invest in precious metals sector funds was suitable having regard to the client’s relevant Know-Your-Client factors including Portfolio Risk Rating.
  14. The Respondent failed to adequately explain, risks associated with concentrating client TF’s investment portfolio in precious metals sector funds.
  15. Client TF suffered a loss of approximately $10,474 as a result of the Gold Strategy.
  16. In May 2018, FundEX fully compensated client TF for her losses.

Client GJ

  1. From November 2006 to June 2016, client GJ was a client of FundEX and the Respondent was the Approved Person responsible for servicing his investment accounts at FundEX.
  2. In November 2006, client GJ opened an RRSP account with FundEX.
  3. On November 27, 2006, the Respondent recorded client GJ’s Portfolio Risk Rating as 20% Low, 30% Low to Moderate, 30% Moderate and High, and 20% High on client GJ’s New Account Application Form.
  4. In February 2009, the Respondent recommended that client GJ implement the Gold Strategy.
  5. On February 10, 2009, based on the Respondent’s recommendation, client GJ invested $4,600 in the BMG Bullion Fund and redeemed his holdings in the fund on February 26, 2010.
  6. On January 4, 2011, the Respondent recorded client GJ Portfolio Risk Rating as, 40% moderate, 30% Moderate to High, and 30% High on a KYC Update Form.
  7. In February 2011, based on the Respondent’s recommendation, client GJ purchased $50,000 in the BMG Bullion Fund.
  8. At the time the Respondent recommended the Gold Strategy, client GJ:
    1. was 57 years old;
    2. had low investment knowledge; and
    3. wanted low risk mutual funds.
  9. In June 2016 when client GJ transferred his accounts out of FundEX, approximately 28% of her money was invested in the BMG Bullion Fund.
  10. The Respondent failed accurately record KYC information and failed to ensure that an investment recommendation he made to client GJ to invest in precious metals sector funds was suitable having regard to the client’s relevant Know-Your-Client factors including risk tolerance.
  11. Client GJ suffered a loss of approximately $10,300 as a result of the Gold Strategy.
  12. On June 15, 2018, FundEX fully compensated client GJ for his losses.

Allegation #1 – The Respondent Misrepresented the Risks of the Gold Strategy

  1. 33.94. As described above, on the course of recommending the Gold Strategy to clients including clients A and B, the Respondent represented that, among other things, the price of gold and other precious metals was poised to increase due to an imminent stock market correction, and investing in gold and precious metals sector funds was a safe investment and a safer alternative to investing in the stock market generally.
  2. 34.95. The Respondent misrepresented, failed to fully and adequately explain, or omitted to explain the risks and benefits of investing in precious metals sector funds, including the risk of holding non-diversified investments and the risk that the precious metal sector funds would not perform as he represented they would.
  3. 35.96. To the extent that the Respondent explained some of the risks of investing in precious metals sector funds, he failed to provide a balanced presentation of the risks and minimized the risks when he described the funds.
  4. 36.97. As described above in paragraphs 23-29, between May and November 2014, the Respondent communicated with client B about the Gold Strategy, which included recommendations to clients A and B to maintain their investments which were concentrated in precious metals sector funds. When providing this advice to clients to maintain their investments, A and B, the Respondent misrepresented, failed to fully and adequately explain, or omitted to explain the risks and benefits of maintaining their investments. To the extent that the Respondent explained some of the risks of maintaining their investments, he failed to provide a balanced presentation of the risks and minimized the risks.
  5. By virtue of the foregoing, the Respondent engaged in conduct contrary to MFDA Rules 2.2.1 and 2.1.1.

Allegation #2 – The Respondent Recommended Unsuitable Investments to Clients A and B

  1. 38.99. As described above, the Respondent recommended that clients A and B hold investments which were concentrated in precious metals sector funds.
  2. 39.100. By January 2013, clients A and B held only the BMG Bullion Fund in their accounts at FundEX. The clients were 72 years old, retired and depended on the monies invested in the BMG Bullion Fund to pay their living expenses.
  3. 40.101. The Respondent failed to ensure that his investment recommendation was suitable having regard to the clients’ relevant Know-Your-Client factors including their age, employment status (i.e., retired), investment objectives, investment knowledge, risk tolerance, and time horizon.
  4. 41.102. The Respondent also failed to ensure that his investment recommendation was suitable having regard to the risks associated with holding non-diversified investments.
  5. 42.103. By virtue of the foregoing, the Respondent engaged in conduct contrary to MFDA Rules 2.2.1 and 2.1.1.

NOTICE is further given that the Respondent shall be entitled to appear and be heard and be represented by counsel or agent at the hearing and to make submissions, present evidence and call, examine and cross-examine witnesses.

NOTICE is further given that MFDA By-laws provide that if, in the opinion of the Hearing Panel, the Respondent:

  • has failed to carry out any agreement with the MFDA;
  • has failed to comply with or carry out the provisions of any federal or provincial statute relating to the business of the Member or of any regulation or policy made pursuant thereto;
  • has failed to comply with the provisions of any By-law, Rule or Policy of the MFDA;
  • has engaged in any business conduct or practice which such Regional Council in its discretion considers unbecoming or not in the public interest; or
  • is otherwise not qualified whether by integrity, solvency, training or experience,

the Hearing Panel has the power to impose any one or more of the following penalties:

  1. a reprimand;
  2. a fine not exceeding the greater of:
    1. $5,000,000.00 per offence; and
    2. an amount equal to three times the profit obtained or loss avoided by such person as a result of committing the violation;
  3. suspension of the authority of the person to conduct securities related business for such specified period and upon such terms as the Hearing Panel may determine;
  4. revocation of the authority of such person to conduct securities related business;
  5. prohibition of the authority of the person to conduct securities related business in any capacity for any period of time;
  6. such conditions of authority to conduct securities related business as may be considered appropriate by the Hearing Panel;

NOTICE is further given that the Hearing Panel may, in its discretion, require that the Respondent pay the whole or any portion of the costs of the proceedings before the Hearing Panel and any investigation relating thereto.

NOTICE is further given that the Respondent must serve a Reply on Enforcement Counsel and file a Reply with the Office of the Corporate Secretary within twenty (20) days from the date of service of this Notice of Hearing.

A Reply shall be served upon Enforcement Counsel at:

Mutual Fund Dealers Association of Canada
650 West Georgia Street, Suite 1220
Vancouver, B.C. V6B 4N9
Attention: Christopher Corsetti
Email: ccorsetti@mfda.ca

A Reply shall be filed by:

  1. providing four copies of the Reply to the Office of the Corporate Secretary by personal delivery, mail or courier to:
    1. The Mutual Fund Dealers Association of Canada
      121 King Street West
      Suite 1000
      Toronto, ON M5H 3T9
      Attention: Office of the Corporate Secretary; or
  2. transmitting one electronic copy of the Reply to the Office of the Corporate Secretary by e-mail at CorporateSecretary@mfda.ca.

A Reply may either:

  1. specifically deny (with a summary of the facts alleged and intended to be relied upon by the Respondent, and the conclusions drawn by the Respondent based on the alleged facts) any or all of the facts alleged or the conclusions drawn by the MFDA in the Notice of Hearing; or
  2. admit the facts alleged and conclusions drawn by the MFDA in the Notice of Hearing and plead circumstances in mitigation of any penalty to be assessed.

NOTICE is further given that the Hearing Panel may accept as having been proven any facts alleged or conclusions drawn by the MFDA in the Notice of Hearing that are not specifically denied in the Reply.

NOTICE is further given that if the Respondent fails:

  1. to serve and file a Reply; or
  2. attend at the hearing specified in the Notice of Hearing, notwithstanding that a Reply may have been served,

the Hearing Panel may proceed with the hearing of the matter on the date and the time and place set out in the Notice of Hearing (or on any subsequent date, at any time and place), without any further notice to and in the absence of the Respondent, and the Hearing Panel may accept the facts alleged or the conclusions drawn by the MFDA in the Notice of Hearing as having been proven and may impose any of the penalties described in the By-laws.

End.

Notice of Hearing amended by Order of the Hearing Panel dated May 24, 2019.

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