Investors Scrutinizing the Regulators

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Fox Guarding the Hen House


Executive leaves Berkshire, faces investigation


Andrew A. Duffy

Saturday, June 25, 2005

A senior investment adviser with Berkshire Investment Group Victoria has resigned his position.

Ian Thow "is no longer with Berkshire ... we are investigating Mr. Thow's outside business activities," said manager of marketing and communications Roberta Faria from Berkshire's Burlington, Ont. head office. "And we are co-operating with regulatory authorities with respect to those activities."

Neither the B.C. Securities Commission nor the Mutual Fund Dealers Association of Canada would comment on whether they are investigating Thow.

Faria said there is no evidence Berkshire's clients have been affected by what she called Thow's "outside business activities."

She would not comment as to what those activities were.

In what is understood to be an unrelated matter, Thow is named in an action that was in front of the B.C. Supreme Court this month dealing with issues arising from the purchase of a $2.952-million aircraft with business partner Donald James.

According to court documents, while an arbitration process was underway to deal with a dispute between the partners, James initiated proceedings against Thow, alleging fraudulent misrepresentation, breach of trust, breach of fiduciary duty and fraud.

Thow, in turn, initiated proceedings alleging breach of the arbitration clause of their general partnership agreement.

The court stayed the action brought by James pending proceedings before an arbitrator. Thow's action was also stayed.

Thow could not be reached for comment Friday. The local Berkshire office referred all calls to Burlington.

Thow announced the opening of the Berkshire offices in Victoria in November 1998 shortly after announcing his resignation as manager of Investors Group downtown Victoria office after 12 years.


Ian Thow takes flight