LEGISLATION - Jurisdiction

Law360 Canada (November 17, 2023, 1:48 PM EST) -- Appeals by the Appellants from a judgment of the Quebec Court of Appeal affirming a Superior Court judgment which confirmed that the Financial Markets Administrative Tribunal (FMAT) had jurisdiction to hear an action brought against them by the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF). The AMF alleged that the Appellants contravened the Quebec Securities Act by participating in a transnational pump-and dump scheme. They stated that the Appellants, who were residents of British Columbia, acted in concert to acquire the shares of a shell company, gave it a legitimate face, and promoted its business for the purpose of fraudulently increasing the value of its shares and then, sold them for a profit for distribution among themselves. They also alleged that the shell company was under the direction of a Quebec resident, was a reporting issuer in Quebec and the pump-and-dump scheme partly targeted Quebec residents. The Appellants filed motions for a declinatory exception. The FMAT dismissed the motions concluding that despite the transnational character of the alleged infractions, it had jurisdiction over the matter since there was a real and substantial connection between the infractions and the province of Quebec. The Superior Court affirmed the FMAT’s decision and dismissed the Appellants’ applications for judicial review. The majority of the Court of Appeal dismissed the appeals. It concluded that the FMAT had correctly concluded that there was a real and substantial connection between Quebec and the Appellants and properly assumed jurisdiction. The Appellants argued that the Court’s formulation of the “real and substantial connection” test in Van Breda applied while the AMF argued that the “real and substantial connection” test in Unifund applied....
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