A junior mining company and a couple of its former executives are paying more than $1 million in sanctions and costs in a settlement with the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) over disclosure violations.
Ontario’s Capital Markets Tribunal approved a settlement between OSC staff and Plateau Energy Metals Inc., former CEO Alexander Holmes, and CFO Philip Gibbs in connection with misleading statements in company news releases and regulatory filings regarding the status of its mining rights in Peru in 2019. In 2021, Plateau Energy was acquired by American Lithium Corp.
Under the settlement, the company agreed to pay a $500,000 penalty and $210,000 costs; Holmes agreed to a $175,000 penalty and $60,000 in costs; and Gibbs agreed to a $75,000 penalty and $30,000 in costs. Holmes is also banned from serving as a director for two years, and Gibbs is prohibited for one year. They also agreed to take an approved educational course on disclosure.
According to the settlement, the company’s disclosure violations stemmed in part from “an overreliance by Canadian management on Peruvian management” about the status of the company’s mining concessions in Peru.
In approving the settlement, the tribunal stressed that timely, accurate disclosure is a fundamental principle of securities regulation.
“In the case of mining companies and other reporting issuers operating outside of Canada, increased vigilance is often required on the part of those responsible for making disclosure decisions,” the tribunal said.