Securities commission warns of scheme that targets money-losing investors

CALGARY — The Alberta Securities Commission is warning investors to steer clear of an organization that offers to help recover funds lost in high-profile failed investments but appears to be more focused on pocketing victims’ enrolment fees.

The provincial regulator says Global Advocacy Association or Global Advocates has been targeting Canadian investors in troubled Alberta-based CBI Group and real estate developer Walton Group of Companies, as well as Ontario-based Canyon Acquisition.

It says the Global entities appear to be operating as a “recovery room scheme,” where investors who may have lost money in an investment are contacted and offered a means to recover their funds.

Once investors agree to the deal, they are typically asked to pay upfront fees for the service or transaction. The operators then keep the funds without providing the service.

The ASC says red flags were raised in the case of Global Advocacy Association because of inaccurate or mismatched phone numbers and addresses on its website concerning offices it claims to have in Sweden and Panama.

It urges investors to take care when advancing funds prior to receiving a service and to be even more cautious when sending money offshore because that compounds the risk of being able to recoup those funds.

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