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CLASS ACTION REGARDING:
ALI GHANI, ALI GHANI AS LITIGATION REPRESENTATIVE FOR THE ESTATE OF ABDUL GHANI, BROADMOOR COMMERCIAL PLAZA DEVELOPMENT CORP., HORIZON COMMERCIAL DEVELOPMENT CORP., HERITAGE PLAZA DEVELOPMENTS INC., PRISM PLACE DEVELOPMENT LTD., PRISM REAL ESTATE INVESTMENT CORPORATION, SUMMERSIDE DEVELOPMENT TRUST, SUMMERSIDE COMMERCIAL TRUST, PRISM SUMMERSIDE LIMITED PARTNERSHIP, PRISM SUMMERSIDE DEVELOPMENT CORP., JANE DOE, JOHN DOE, and ABC CORP.
NOTICE OF CERTIFICATION
What is the Class Action?
A lawsuit has been certified as a class action against Ali Ghani, the estate of Abdul Ghani (through Ali Ghani as the litigation representative), Broadmoor Commercial Plaza Development Corp., Horizon Commercial Development Corp., Heritage Plaza Developments Inc., Prism Place Development Ltd., Prism Real Estate Investment Corporation, Summerside Development Trust, Summerside Commercial Trust, Prism Summerside Limited Partnership, Prism Summerside Development Corp., Jane Doe, John Doe and ABC Corp. (collectively, the “Defendants”).
The lawsuit alleges that Ali Ghani and the late Abdul Ghani (the “Ghanis”) formed the Defendant corporations, partnerships and trusts, and caused them (except for Prism Real Estate Investment Corporation) to sell shares or trust units to the public for the purpose of developing real-estate projects in Alberta. Instead of developing and/or operating the real-estate projects for the benefit of the public investors, the lawsuit alleges that the Ghanis wrongfully misappropriated the value from the companies, partnerships and trusts for their personal gain. Among other things, the lawsuit alleges that the Ghanis caused financial information to be concealed from investors, entered improper transactions, and transferred monies to themselves or their companies. The lawsuit alleges that the Ghanis caused the investors to lose their entire investments.
The Representative Plaintiff, Ilan Handelsman, seeks damages and other relief on his own behalf and on behalf of everyone who invested in the Defendant entities during the relevant period.
How do I know if I am a member of the Class?
The Court has defined the class (the “Class”) as follows:
All persons who purchased shares or trust units of the Prism Entities, wherever they may reside or be domiciled, between January 1, 2008 and December 31, 2014, except the Excluded Persons.
For the purpose of the Class definition, “Prism Entities” means:
Broadmoor Commercial Plaza Development Corp., Heritage Plaza Developments Inc., Prism Place Development Ltd., Horizon Commercial Development Corp., Summerside Development Trust, Summerside Commercial Trust, Prism Summerside Limited Partnership, and Prism Summerside Development Corp.
“Excluded Persons” means:
(i) the Defendants, and as applicable, their legal representatives, heirs, predecessors, successors, assigns, affiliates or any individual who is a family member of the Ghanis, or
(ii) any investors in Prism Place Development Ltd. that received proceeds from the sale of the lands legally described as Plan A, Block 68, Lots 25 to 32, excepting thereout all mines and minerals and the right to work the same, in or around February 2017.
The Court has also defined sub-classes for investors in each of the Prism Entities.
If you purchased an investment in the Prism Entities, then you are likely a member of the Class.
If you are not sure whether you are a member of the Class, you should speak to the firm Borden Ladner Gervais LLP who is counsel to the Representative Plaintiff (“Class Counsel”).
How do I participate in this Class Action?
Class members who wish to participate in the class action do not need to do anything at this time. They are automatically included in the class action.
What if I do not want to participate in this Class Proceeding?
Any Class member who wishes to opt-out of the class action must do so by sending a written opt-out form, signed by the class member, stating that he or she opts out of the class action. The written opt-out form can be downloaded here.
No class member will be permitted to opt-out of the class action after April 5, 2021. If you opt-out of the class action, you will take full responsibility for initiating your own lawsuit against the Defendants and for taking all legal steps necessary to protect your claim, if you wish to proceed with a claim.
How is this action being funded? What are the costs to me?
The Representative Plaintiff is using Class Counsel to represent him and the Class in this lawsuit. The Representative Plaintiff has formed a company, 2052227 Alberta Ltd., to raise money for his legal fees and expenses for this class action. 2052227 Alberta Ltd. has sold shares to Class members and the proceeds of such sales will pay for the Representative Plaintiff’s legal expenses for this action.
The Court has granted an order approving 2052227 Alberta Ltd. as a litigation funding vehicle for this class action and has also pre-approved a distribution mechanism for any recoveries generated from or as a result of this class action. The Court’s order states, in summary, that any recoveries will be paid: (i) to pay any outstanding liabilities of 2052227 Alberta Ltd., (ii) to reimburse shareholders in 2052227 Alberta Ltd. for their principal investment plus interest, (iii) to 2052227 Alberta Ltd.’s consultant, and (iv) to Class members who invested in 2052227 Alberta Ltd. Class members who did not invest in 2052227 Alberta Ltd. will be entitled to a smaller proportion of any recoveries.
If you wish to be a shareholder in 2052227 Alberta Ltd. you must do so by no later than April 5, 2021, and you should contact Class Counsel for further information.
If the class action is successful in establishing that the Defendants are liable to pay money to the Class members, the Court may provide further directions regarding how recoveries should be allocated.
How do I find out more about this Class Action?
Questions about the matters in this Notice should not be directed to the Court. Questions for Class Counsel may also be directed by e-mail, fax or telephone to:
Jack R. Maslen
Borden Ladner Gervais LLP
1900, 520 3rd Ave. S.W.
Calgary, AB T2P 0R3