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On appeal, the Nova Scotia Securities Commission (NSSC) reduced the penalties imposed against a rep after finding several errors in an Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) hearing panel decision.

The NSSC reviewed both the merits and penalty decisions of the self-regulatory organization’s disciplinary panel against Shirley Locke, an advisor currently with Aligned Capital Partners Inc. in Halifax.

In 2020, the panel ordered that she be fined $90,000 and suspended for nine months, after it found that she violated IIROC rules regarding KYC and suitability, and engaged in unauthorized trading.

Locke appealed the panel’s findings, and while the NSSC upheld much of the SRO panel’s decisions, it also concluded that the hearing panel erred in finding that she committed several of the alleged violations — and it dismissed those findings against her.

As a result, the commission also reduced the penalties imposed on Locke, based on its findings that several of the allegations were not proven.

The NSSC dropped the fine ordered against her to $58,750 and reduced the costs award from $30,000 to $25,000. It also reduced her suspension from nine months to six months, and dropped the requirement that she rewrite the Conduct and Practices Handbook (CPH) exam before resuming her career.