Stock promotion scheme exploits pandemic fears – by Niall McGee (Globe and Mail – July 6, 2020)

Crestview Exploration Inc., the Calgary-based gold exploration company at the centre of an investigation over an apparent “pump and dump” mailing campaign tied to the novel coronavirus, was also the target of an aggressive online stock promotion on both sides of the Atlantic.

Website posts and e-mailed stock tips promoting Crestview strongly resemble letters mailed across Canada this past spring that made false claims about the tiny gold explorer, which is registered in British Columbia.

Crestview’s chief executive, Glen Watson, told The Globe and Mail last month the company had nothing to do with the letters, and their dissemination had inflicted great damage.

Last month, the RCMP, the B.C. Securities Commission (BCSC) and the Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) said they had started an investigation into possible securities market violations, after Crestview’s share price gyrated wildly following the mailing of the promotional letters.

In April and May, letters in an envelope marked “CORONAVIRUS AFFECTING MARKETS: READ NOW,” were delivered by Canada Post. An author named James Campbell claimed Crestview’s shares were poised to explode by 500 per cent and said the company is “sitting on billions of dollars of precious metals.”

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