Winnipeg – The Manitoba Securities Commission (MSC) is issuing a warning to Manitobans about investing with Mr. Weizhen Tang, a man criminally convicted for running a multi-million dollar fraud in Ontario, and who has been permanently banned from the Ontario’s capital markets.
In 2012, Tang was convicted of running a $50 million Ponzi scheme in Toronto, in which investors lost over $24 million. Tang was sentenced to six years in jail and ordered to pay $2.8 million in restitution to victims. The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) has permanently banned him from investing, buying or selling securities.
Weizhen Tang, Overseas Chinese limited Partnership, Weizhen Tang and Associated Inc. Oversea Chinese Fund Limited Partnership Business, and Weizhen Tang Corp, are not, and never have been, registered to trade securities in Manitoba.
Tang was released from prison in 2015, and given five years to pay back $2.8 million in restitution or face an additional five years in jail. With the deadline of July 20, 2020 looming, securities regulators are concerned he will aggressively target new investors.
“Mr. Tang has indicated to media that he has ‘done nothing wrong,’ and that he intends to fully resume investment activities outside of Ontario,”says Jason Roy, Senior Investigator with the MSC. “He has also indicated he will offer investors returns of one per cent per week, or approximately 50 per cent per year—which is roughly seven times the TSX average annual return over the last ten years.”
On May 28, 2019, the OSC issued an investor alert warning the public not to invest with Mr. Tang or any associated companies:
The Nova Scotia Securities Commission issued a similar alert on June 17.
Although Mr. Tang previously defrauded investors in Ontario’s Chinese community, MSC encourages all Manitobans to be fully aware of whom they are considering investing with.
“Anyone could be a potential target,” says Roy, “Always research the background of a company or individual you consider investing with, and check whether they’re registered to conduct business in Manitoba.”
MSC suggests potential investors follow some basic advice to avoid investment fraud:
Start by checking an individual or company’s registration at aretheyregistered.ca
- Research an investment before making a commitment
- Look for investment fraud red flags such as promises of high returns with low risk, pressure to invest quickly, and inconsistent details
- Never send money to anyone you only know from an unsolicited phone call or email
- Never give out sensitive personal information online or over the phone
Members of the public are advised to contact MSC if they believe they have been targeted by any type of investment fraud attempt. MSC’s anti-fraud line is 1-855-FRAUD-MB.
The public can also visit recognizeinvestmentfraud.com for more information on common investment frauds and scams.
The Manitoba Securities Commission is a division of the Manitoba Financial Services Agency, a Special Operating Agency of the Government of Manitoba that protects investors and promotes fair and efficient capital markets throughout the province.