The creator of PlexCoin Dominic Lacroix does not escape his trial
Dominic Lacroix at the Quebec City courthouse, October 3, 2017. (File photo)
Quebec City businessman Dominic Lacroix fails in his attempt to avoid a trial.
The creator of the virtual currency PlexCoin has seen his request for a stay of proceedings dismissed, the judge considering that the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) has nothing to be ashamed of.
The AMF is suing the Charlesbourg resident, his spouse and a former PlexCoin employee for offering investments, without having the legal documents to do so.
Lacroix is also accused of giving false or misleading information to investors.
Dominic Lacroix and his spouse Sabrina Paradis-Lacroix at the Quebec City courthouse, in July 2018 .
His cryptocurrency that was supposed to compete with Bitcoin had raised nearly $15 million. But the PlexCoin turned out to be an empty shell.
Pursued by the AMF since June 2020, Dominic Lacroix mentioned the deadlines for requesting the annulment of his trial. Moreover, he claims to be the victim of abuse of process on the part of the AMF and its investigators.
Judge Steve Magnan rejected all of the arguments of the businessman.
Under the Jordan decision, the trial of Lacroix and his associates should have taken place within 18 months after his indictment, but this ceiling is well exceeded.
If Lacroix believed he was responsible for the three-month delay in the process, the judge ruled that he was responsible for most of the delays.
He has multiplied the motions in anticipation of the trial, including one aimed at having its lawyers paid by the State.
Judge Magnan described this procedure as frivolous since contrary to his claims, Lacroix had the financial resources to pay his attorneys.
The magistrate recalled that the Supreme Court wanted to impose a change of culture with the Jordan judgment, while emphasizing that the defense must also contribute to it.
The judge found no fault with the Autorité des marchés financiers. (File photo)
As for the abuse of process alleged by Dominic Lacroix, it is not so, also ruled the judge.
The businessman claimed that he would not be entitled to make full answer and defence, due in part to negligence in the disclosure of evidence from the AMF.
Judge Magnan noted rather that the agency's investigators showed concern in their work. There were indeed errors, made in good faith, but they were quickly corrected, he underlines.
The trial must therefore begin on January 30 and will be stretch over more than two weeks.
In the event of conviction, the AMF intends to seek fines of $11 million and a prison sentence against Dominic Lacroix.
His spouse Sabrina Paradis-Royer is also liable to fines totaling nearly $6 million.