Regulator Pushes For Receiver For Canada’s Sextant

Mar 13 2009 | 1:05am ET

Canadian regulators are taking the next step toward shutting down hedge fund Sextant Capital Management, accused of illegal self-dealing and inflating its returns.

The Ontario Securities Commission has asked a court to appoint a receiver for “all the property and assets” of Toronto-based Sextant. The OSC has already frozen Sextant’s assets and slapped the firm and its principals with a temporary trading ban, which it will seek to extend on Monday.

A hearing on the matter is scheduled for April 30.

According to the OSC, Sextant inflated the value its Strategic Opportunities Hedge Fund and two offshore hedge funds by investing in a pair of private companies with rights to develop Icelandic glaciers. The regulator says that 95% of the hedge fund’s assets are invested in the companies, which are themselves almost totally owned by founder Otto Spork and the Sextant funds. The OSC has charged Spork, his daughter Natalie, Sextant’s president, and Robert Levack, the firm’s chief compliance officer, with illegal self-dealing and inflating the value of Strategic Opportunities.

Spork has denied the allegations and promised a “vigorous” defense.

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