BCSC Alleges Three Participated in OTC Stock Manipulation Scheme

By Andrew Rickard | August 26 2015 10:40AM

The British Columbia Securities Commission (BCSC) says that Christine Maria Cerisse, her spouse Laurence Frederick Austin, also known as Lawrence Frederick Austin, and Thomas John Sadler all participated in a scheme to manipulate the price of Solanex Management, a Nevada company listed on the Over the Counter Bulletin Board in the United States.

In a notice of hearing issued earlier this week, the BCSC alleges that Cerisse, Austin, and Sadler issued false or misleading news releases, made illegal distributions, and participated in market manipulation. The BCSC also says that, in a compelled interview that took place over two days in 2013, Cerisse made false or misleading statements to its investigators.

Although Solanex lost the legal rights to the only technology it had owned since the company’s inception, the BCSC says that the respondents failed to issue a news release disclosing this fact. Instead, the regulator alleges they mounted a promotional campaign in 2009 that was intended to create demand for Solanex’s shares at rising prices. The BCSC also says that Cerisse and Austin actually controlled over 99% of Solanex, leaving only 100,000 shares in the market, although this fact was never made known to the public.

The BCSC notes that Solanex’s shares were cease traded on April 1, 2010 for failure to file various documents in accordance with Solanex’s continuous disclosure obligations. The cease trade order was updated on Feb. 2, 2011 to reflect the fact that Solanex’s name was changed to Solanbridge Group.

None of these allegations have been proven, and a hearing date has been scheduled for Sept. 22, 2015.