Putting the force in enforcement – Listed Magazine

Lawrence E. Ritchie

Aug 25, 2017

In an August 2017 article in Listed Magazine, writer Cooper Langford provides an in-depth examination of the current state of the enforcement regime at the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC). In addition to reviewing the details of the upcoming prosecution of the high-profile alleged insider trading case involving shares in the former Montreal-based Amaya Inc., the author explores the impact of the new measures the OSC has implemented – such as the adoption of a “no contest” settlement policy, the creation of the Joint Serious Offences Team featuring a partnership with the RCMP’s Integrated Market Enforcement Team and the Ontario Provincial Police, and the launch of a whistleblower program – as well as the hiring of a new director of enforcement. He also consults several industry experts about the securities regulator’s enforcement reputation, including Larry Ritchie, an Osler litigation partner and Co-Chair of the firm’s Securities Regulatory Enforcement and Broker-Dealer Practice.

“I think Ontario is doing a lot of work,” says Larry, who was also vice-chair of the OSC from 2007 to 2014. “The downside in enforcement is that a lot of what is being done goes on below the surface. It’s seven-eighths of an iceberg. You just don’t see it until actions are commenced or settlements are filed.”

Further on in the article, Larry comments on the fragmented nature of securities regulation in Canada and the absence of a nationally accountable enforcement regime: “I think our system has suffered from the lack of that coordination and the lack of that accountability.” However, he adds that the creation of a national enforcement system is not dependent on the establishment of a national regulator.

Read more about the OSC’s ongoing enforcement efforts in Cooper Langford’s article “Putting the force in enforcement” in Listed Magazine.