The perpetrators of the Mount Real investment scheme that fleeced about 1600 small investors out of $130 million have apparently paid only a tiny fraction of the fines imposed upon them by the courts.
And the victims aren't happy about finding out this week that 23 of the investment counsellors convicted in the scheme paid only 15 per cent of their fines.
'We're outraged about a whole lot of things in this case," says Janet Watson, who speaks for Mount Real victims. "The length of time it has taken; this fraud took place in 2005. Thesse charges were laid in 2007, 2008. Most of them have not paid their fines, they're doing community service...and even for those who have paid, the money isn't even coming back to the victims."
The alleged mastermind of the scheme, Mount Real boss Lino Matteo, is among the handful of alleged perpetrators still awaiting trial in connection with the scheme. He faces no less than 308 charges.
The fines that have been levied against those convicted in the scheme amount to only about $3.25 million — of which only $484,000 has been paid, and by only seven of the 23 who've been convicted.
Watson had demanded an update into how much had been paid in fines from the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF), the province's financial regulator.
She's also upset that even that small amount isn't coming back to the victims.
"They could not give this money that they're receiving from these fines back to the victims, because it's considered the fruits of criminal activity, which is absolutely ridiculous," Watson said. "Why is it okay for the AMF to receive the money, and not us?"