SECURITIES COMMISSIONS - Duties - Enforcement - Investigations and examinations - Investigation order

Law360 Canada (November 29, 2023, 7:08 AM EST) -- Application by Binance Holdings Limited (Binance) for judicial review of an Investigation Order of the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) and a related Summons and to vary an Order dismissing its motion for an interim stay pending the disposition of its application for judicial review. Binance operated an online crypto asset trading platform. The OSC issued a press release indicating that crypto asset trading platforms doing business in Ontario were required to bring their operations into compliance with Ontario securities law. OSC staff notified Binance they were contemplating enforcement proceedings against it. Binance and its Canadian corporation entered into an Undertaking and Acknowledgement to the OSC (Undertaking). Among other things, Binance acknowledged it had given Ontario users incorrect information and had permitted Ontario investors to continue to trade after restrictions were supposedly in place to prevent continued trading. By order, the OSC initiated an investigation (Investigation Order). A Summons was issued requiring the production of documents and information. Binance argued the Investigation Order was an abuse of process since the Undertaking was a settlement and should be quashed. Binance submitted that if the Investigation Order was quashed, so should the Summons. It also argued that the Summons was an unreasonable seizure under s. 8 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (Charter). The OSC submitted the Undertaking was clear. Also, the Summons did not engage the Charter protection against unreasonable search and seizure because it did not require production of private communications....
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