B.C. realtor suspended after letting buyer move cash into her own bank account, avoiding regulators
A Richmond, B.C.-based realtor has been suspended for nine months and fined $7,500 for signing a contract without a buyer’s approval and helping them avoid federal financial disclosure rules.
The penalties against Yan (Isabel) Wen of Regent Park Fairchild Realty were revealed in a Real Estate Council of B.C. consent order, dated April 4.
According to the regulator, Wen’s misconduct was related to the sale of a property on Yale Road near Chilliwack in March, 2015.
“While she was acting as the agent for the buyer … she knowingly assisted the buyer to avoid the application of the rules and requirements established by the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre (FINTRAC) of Canada by allowing the Buyer to transfer money directly to her personal bank account in Canada,” reads the decision.
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FINTRAC is Canada’s “financial intelligence unit,” whose mandate is to “facilitate the detection, prevention and deterrence of money laundering and the financing of terrorist activities,” according to the federal government.
The order said Wen further knew or believed the buyer would make the cash transfer, which was intended as a deposit for the property, under a name other than their own.
She also failed to promptly transfer that cash to the brokerage or inform her managing broker about the unconventional transfer, the disciplinary committee found.
The order does not disclose the amount of money transferred, nor where it was transferred from.
The regulator found Wen had further committed misconduct when she signed parts of a contract on behalf of the buyer, without getting their authorization to do so in writing.
As a result, Wen has been suspended for 270 days, during which time she will be further barred from acting as an unlicensed assistant, along with the fine.
She will also have to complete an ethics in business practice course.
When her licence is returned, Wen will be under “enhanced supervision” by a managing broker for a 12-month period.
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