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A Sino-Panel factory is seen in Gaoyao, Southern China on June 28, 2011. (Adam Dean For The Globe and Mail)
A Sino-Panel factory is seen in Gaoyao, Southern China on June 28, 2011. (Adam Dean For The Globe and Mail)

Co-founder Kai Kit Poon exits role at Sino-Forest Add to ...

Troubled Chinese forestry firm Sino-Forest Corp. is making further changes in its leadership with the exit of co-founder and president Kai Kit Poon.

The company, which has been accused of being a massive fraud, said Tuesday that Mr. Poon has left his role, which has primarily been as a liaison with Chinese authorities.

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Mr. Poon, a former Forestry Bureau official in the Guangdong province, helped found Sino-Forest alongside Hong Kong entrepreneur Allen Chan in 1994. He also served as a director until 2009.

The announcement marks the latest change at Sino-Forest.

The OSC has accused the company and several former executives of lying to investors and attempting to mislead investigators.

The allegations have not been proven in court.

Last month, chief financial officer David Horsley left the company after stepping down from his role in April when the Ontario Securities Commission sent him an enforcement notice.

Mr. Horsley faces allegations that he did not comply with Ontario securities law and acted contrary to the public interest, however does not face the more serious allegations of fraud.

The OSC and a special committee of the company’s board both launched investigations last year after fraud allegations were levelled by short-seller Muddy Waters Research.

The RCMP has also launched its own investigation into the case.

Sino-Forest has filed for bankruptcy protection and is working to restructure itself under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act.

The company has proposed a plan what will see its creditors takeover the firm.

The plan requires the support of a majority of the affected creditors holding at least two-thirds in value of the claims against the company.

Holders of Sino-Forest’s shares, which have been delisted from the Toronto Stock Exchange, will not receive anything under the proposal.

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