By NEIL HARTNELL
Tribune Business Editor
The winding-up of a former Bahamian broker/dealer whose principal pled guilty in the US to money laundering is close to completion, its liquidator saying the Attorney-General’s withdrawal of a Forfeiture Order registration had eliminated a potential threat to client assets.
Clifford Culmer, the BDO Mann Judd accountant and partner, in his ninth and 10th reports to the Supreme Court on Dominion Investments (Nassau) liquidation, also said a possible threat to client assets from action taken by the broker/dealer’s convicted principal, Martin Tremblay, had been eliminated.
Detailing how events played out, Mr Culmer said Mr Tremblay had filed a June 1, 2010, application for a Supreme Court Order that would dismiss a previous Consent Order restraining up to $220,000 in assets at Dominion that were being held for his benefit.
The $220,000 was the sum being sought by the US authorities as forfeiture for Mr Tremblay’s conviction, but the former Dominion principal initiated his action on the grounds “he was not informed” of the previous proceedings.
“As there was a possibility that the discharge of the Consent Order could negatively impact the trust [client] assets in the Bahamas, the liquidator instructed counsel to oppose the application,” Mr Culmer said.
Further complications arose when the Attorney General began proceedings on June 16, 2010, to register the US Forfeiture Order made against Mr Tremblay, “and for an Order enabling the same to be enforced against the accounts of Dominion.
“Having regard to the possible implications of such an application, the liquidator instructed counsel to take all measures to oppose the proceedings,” Mr Culmer said.
Ultimately, the Attorney General withdrew the Forfeiture Order registration application, and this “alleviated the liquidator’s concerns in relation to the discharge of the Consent Order”.
Mr Tremblay, according to Mr Culmer’s reports that were filed with the Supreme Court on July 2, 2012, achieved the discharge of the Order restraining any assets held by Dominion on his behalf. He did, though, withdraw his application for costs against the broker/dealer’s estate.
Apart from recovering accounts receivables from customers, Mr Culmer said that to complete Dominion’s liquidation he also needed to recover $357,737 in outstanding liquidation costs from Canada.
“The liquidator has had to pursue a claim, and intervene, in proceedings in Canada to recover outstanding liquidation costs due, amounting to $357,737, to the estate of Dominion from a trust asset over which the Canadian Revenue Authorities obtained a provisional garnishee over to secure alleged tax liabilities of that customer, now deceased,” Mr Culmer said.
“Negotiations are continuing with the authorities there to secure payment of the costs due in accordance with the July 2008 Order.”
The BDO Mann Judd accountant added that he had “preserved the confidentiality of each and every customer of Dominion”, despite the information requests made by the Canadian authorities.
And, recalling when Mr Tremblay was arrested in the US, Mr Culmer said: “The staff of Dominion abandoned their posts and apparently various files and records were removed by customers before all the remaining files, records and computer equipment were seized by the Royal Bahamas Police Force.”