Calgary, Alberta – On February 14, 2015, Gary Allen Sorenson, age 71 and Milowe Brost, age 61, were found guilty of two counts each of theft over $5,000 and fraud over $5,000. BROST was also found guilty of Laundering Proceeds of Crime. The matter is adjourned until next week for sentencing submissions.
In September 2009, after a 4 year investigation, the Calgary RCMP’s Integrated Market Enforcement Team (IMET) charged Gary Allen SORENSON and Milowe Allen BROST with diverting money from thousands of investors between 1999 and 2009, in a Ponzi-type scheme that raised in excess of $100 Million from investors in Canada, the United States and internationally.
These individuals created a business, Syndicated Gold Depository S.A. (SGD) and based it on a popular commodity, gold. SGD then formed an agreement to loan money to Merendon Mining Corporation Ltd. for the promise of a high rate of return. This high rate of return, along with promises of tax advantages, was used to entice investors into placing their money by investing in offshore shell companies. Nominees were placed to run the shell companies which were then marketed by BROST’s companies to solicit funds from unsuspecting investors.
“Thousands of people have been affected by the unlawful actions of two individuals, and in some cases, unsuspecting investors have had their lives and financial futures completely destroyed.” said Inspector Gord Sereda, Officer in Charge of the Southern Alberta’s RCMP Financial Integrity Team which conducts capital market investigations, “This is life-changing for some of the victims of these crimes. We hope through awareness, prevention, investigation and disruption, the Financial Integrity Team can help reduce the number of people whose financial futures are put in serious jeopardy by falling victim to these schemes.”
Throughout this successful investigation and prosecution, the RCMP worked in closely with many partner agencies in Canada and the United States, including Alberta Specialized Prosecutions, the Alberta Securities Commission (ASC), Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), Forensic Accounting Management Group (FAMG) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
The IMET mandate is to prevent, investigate and support the prosecution of serious Criminal Code capital market fraud offences that are of regional or national significance, and that threaten investor confidence or the economic stability of Canada. Maintaining investor confidence in Canada’s publicly traded companies, capital markets and other investments is crucial in today’s economic environment. This mandate is now falls under the RCMP “K” Division Financial Integrity Team in Calgary.
The RCMP’s capital market investigative resources are often comprised of highly specialized RCMP investigators, Public Prosecution Service of Canada legal advisors, securities regulators, representatives of other federal enforcement agencies, law enforcement agencies of local jurisdiction, forensic accountants, and various support staff. Maintaining investor confidence in Canada’s publicly traded companies and capital markets is crucial in today’s economic environment.
For more information on how RCMP Integrated Market Enforcement Teams help detect and deter capital market fraud, visit www.rcmp.gc.ca/imet-eipmf/index-eng.htm. To find out more about investment and security fraud, visit www.rcmp.gc.ca/scams-fraudes/inv-fra-eng.htm.