DO THE RIGHT THING
I thought I would provide an update on my continuing search for justice from the criminal actions of BMO.
I will set out the present status. A lot of it deals with the attendances at court and my health, a lot of it involves BMO, but more particularly some judges who regardless of my health and medical treatment have put pressure on me to disclose aspects of my health that are not being challenged, and then proceeding in my absence.
DO THE RIGHT THING
BMO’ s failure to consider this approach confirms to me the existence of a criminal culture that I experienced in my dealings with BMO that promoted illegal activity, lying about it and putting that evidence to court, and spending excessive amounts of money to conceal and fight it. My question is just this. If I was wrong. If there was not the criminal culture I experienced, why did no one from BMO ever contact me, own and take responsibility for their action and deal with it properly. DO THE RIGHT THING. The fact that they don’t seem to know what THE RIGHT THING is ,nor have they made any effort to show that they are not the criminals that the evidence shows them to be. Instead they spent your money if you are a customer of BMO to fight the victim. All of their actions and the fact that they have not DONE THE RIGHT THING. Confirms that culture to me.
If they really believed it and practised the ethics of trust and honesty they profess, and what Canadians expect from them, you would think they would be anxious to clear up the matter and demonstrate that they will not tolerate fraud dishonesty or lying. Unfortunately here they not only tolerated but went to great lengths including criminal activity to defendant support it while apparently refusing to do a proper if any investigation. This is strong confirmation of a culture of dishonesty, fraud, arrogance, entitlement, and of an organization apparently devoid of ethics
After the Summary Judgement Motion, I brought an action against all of the parties who had committed perjury and fraud in obtaining the judgement.
It turns out that you can stand on the street corner lie about someone and do serious damage and be sued for libel and slander if it is not true. In our legal system in Ontario, you can go to court, commit perjury and lie, cause damage to the other party, and you are not liable for the damage that your lies under oath were responsible for.
BMO and the other parties brought a motion to dismiss this action and the previous action I brought against them in 2015, based on the argument that had been decided by Conway and was therefore res judicata in that it was already determined. I consented to dismissal of the action that I brought after the summary judgement motion.
I don’t disagree that most of the facts and law that Conway corruptly distorted, despite the breach of her obligations as a judge, are nonetheless final.
The one issue that was not decided by Conway was whether or not
BMO owed me a duty as an executor. They say they do not owe me a duty. I believe they are very wrong. An executor is entitled to any information’s that the deceased would be entitled to.
That breach of duty and the failure to disclose the evidence they allege was from Harold Laski was to cover up the fraud they committed.
I have been in ill health for several years. As a result of my health I had to give up practising law and my house. A great deal of my psychological illnesses are a direct result of the abuse I’ve suffered from a number of judges in this this matter.
The matter initially had come up in front of Justice Chiappetta on April 12, 2018. As a result of which and pursuing torpor instructions, I delivered a notice of discontinuance on the case that I had brought after the summary judgement motion. As far as the other action was concerned although most of the facts I was stuck with from Conway’s perverse judgement I made no argument. The only issue was their duty to tell me as an executor any information I asked for or requested that the deceased would be entitled to. The law is that an executor stands in the shoes of the deceased.
Justice Chiappetta made a very strange order. It is an order that I do not recall ever hearing in such circumstances. She ordered that there be no cross examinations on the affidavits. Neither counsel raised this issue. It was a surprising and unsolicited order from the court which restricted my ability to provide full answer and defense. There are issues in the affidavit of Andrew Parley which are inaccurate and require cross-examination. I was not well and was stunned at the lack of explanation from her and the lack of any response from counsel to this off hand order.
This was just one of the odd and unusual decisions from a number of judges who dealt with this case and made decisions which in my opinion do not appear to conform to my understanding of general judicial standards.
The next time the matter came up with September 10, 2018 before Justice Gloria Wilson. By this time my health was such that I had to appear by CourtCcall, a service used by a number of jurisdictions including Ontario, to provide audio and video connection to the court room.
I was now ill and unable to work.I had a number of medical certificates over the last few years when they were required. I had never had any problem. The note said that for health reasons I was not able to work and I would be reassessed in two months.
Wilson, with no evidence of any kind to suggest that my certified doctor and myself as a solicitor with 40 years experience were misleading the court.expressed dissatisfaction with the note finding that it did not give the reasons I couldn’t proceed.
I explained to her that I do not write the doctor’s notes, nor do I tell them what to put in. I had had a total break down as a result of the corrupt decision of Conway and being defrauded and lied to by BMO. My instructions from my five physicians was that I needed a complete rest and was not capable of working at all as the letter said.Wilson didn’t ask me for any clarification. Nor did she suggest we get further information from the doctor.
With what I view as a total lack of judicial integrity she granted the adjournment which was not being opposed. She ordered me to deliver materials which was clear I would not be well enough to do by that time. Then she went and ordered that the matter be peremptory on me. This means that I could not get it adjourned and had to go ahead on that date. Given my health that order did not seem to make sense. It seemed like a very inappropriate way to deal with the medical certificate. It was certainly not warranted in the circumstances and was inappropriate
The order had no basis in law or fact. That remedy is imposed by a court when one of the parties is delaying the matter unduly. In this case it was the first time up. There was no suggestion by the other party that I had in any way done anything improper or intentional to delay the matter. In my opinion a sad example of ego and judgeitis and was clearly contrary to the standards for judicial behaviour. it showed bias, a lack of impartiality and lack of fairness.
The worst part was that the pressure my doctors were trying to relieve me from so I could be treated was multiplied by the pressure of that decision. I had a relapse which severely affected my life. A further result of that mean-spirited decision was that future judges who dealt with the matter would put pressure on me and remind me that it was peremptory on me.
The next appearance was scheduled for Tuesday, 23 April 2019 before Justice Nishikawa. The Tuesday following the Easter Holiday long weekend
I had been taken by ambulance to Toronto General Hospital, then to Toronto Western Hospital, and back to Toronto General.I was there for 10 or 11 days. I was released late Thursday night right before the Easter Weekend. I was not able to arrange a Court call appearance in such a short time.
I sent the following email to BMO’s counsel Jonathan Chen:
This is further to your email below and our conversation of this morning.
As I advised you I was taken to the hospital April 10 at the Toronto Western where I spent a few days.
I was transferred to TGH I believe on the Friday the 12 and was released late Thursday the 18th.
The hospitalization was the result of my blood sugar being over 30 and my kidneys failing.
Given the Easter weekend, I was unable to get any of the documentation from the hospital.
Again given the holiday I was unable to set up court call even though I tried them several times.
I am not well enough to attend.
His honour had indicated that if I wanted an adjournment I would have to provide medical evidence.
As I say I have not had that opportunity.
Since we last appeared in court I have seen seven different doctors.
I was at my psychiatrist office to discuss a letter from him, when I fell ill and was admitted to the hospital.
I have not left my house save and except for medical appointments in the last several months.
I intend to provide documents from the hospital and my GP and Psychiatrist as evidence of my liabilities and limitations.
The only issue remaining between the parties is whether or not BMO owed to me as an executor a fiduciary duty to advise me with respect to the deceased dealing with his account.
BMO refused when my father died to give me any information. They stonewalled me for four years revealing the evidence one month before the motion. This evidence was used as determinative by judge Conway.
Their failure to provide it precipitated a very expensive four year estate battle causing approximately $400,000 in cost.
Your Honor this is an important issue. Besides their other conduct there should not be a precedent where a bank can deny an executor who stands in the shoes of the deceased.
I have asked Jonathan Chen to bring his cell phone tomorrow morning and if possible call me so that I can participate.
If not I would ask that you adjourn the matter to give me an opportunity to collect the medical evidence
Wayne S. Laski
416-229-1166 direct line
I acknowledge receipt of your below email which appears to suggest that you will not be appearing on the motion scheduled for April 23, 2019.
As you know, our motion to strike was originally scheduled on April 12, 2018 for a full day on September 19, 2018. You took no issue with the hearing date at that time.
About a week before the hearing, we attended before Justice Wilson at Civil Practice Court wherein I requested an adjournment for health reasons but only provided the Court with a one-line medical note that provided no details as to why you could not proceed. Justice Wilson ultimately adjourned the motion to February 11, 2019 on a peremptory basis and required that your responding materials be filed by November 2, 2018. No materials were filed by that deadline.
On January 28, 2019, we appeared again at Civil Practice Court before Justice Nishikawa. Although the hearing was marked peremptory by Justice Wilson, you demanded an adjournment for health reasons. Justice Nishikawa adjourned the motion to April 23, 2019 and required that you file responding materials by March 22, 2019. Justice Nishikawa also endorsed that there would be no further adjournments unless you provide specific information regarding your medical and health limitations from a qualified medical doctor. To date, we have not received responding materials from you or the medical documentation required by Justice Nishikawa.
In the circumstances, we intend to proceed with the motion scheduled for April 23, 2019. In light of your e-mail below, however, we will consider an adjournment provided that you provide us with written confirmation that you have been admitted into a hospital. Specifically, in line with the previous endorsements made to date, we require a medical note from your treating doctor indicating which hospital you have been admitted into, how long you will be admitted and for what reason you have been admitted. If you cannot provide us with a medical note, please have your treating doctor call us. We can be reached at (416) 865-3553 or (416) 865-3093.
We look forward to hearing from you. If we do not hear from you, we will provide this correspondence to the judge hearing the motion next week and will ask that the motion proceed as scheduled.
From: Wayne [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Tuesday, April 16, 2019 11:42 AM
To: Jonathan Chen
Cc: Sophie Alexander
Subject: Re: Laski – Motion
Jonathan. I won’t get a chance to read the enclosure. I’m presently in the hospital since last Wednesday and they believe I will be here for a week or two. I will be in touch when I get out
From: Jonathan Chen <email@example.com>
Sent: Tuesday, April 16, 2019 10:03 AM
Cc: Sophie Alexander
Subject: Laski – Motion
We will be filing the attached motion confirmation form today (and before 2PM). Please advise if you have comments.
If we do not hear from you in the next two hours or so, I will amend the form accordingly.
The rules of professional conduct state that Council should agree to a request for an adjournment unless it goes to the merits. It is interesting to note that the instructions from BMO, was to oppose the adjournment and proceed despite my circumstances.
Despite my request I was not connected to the hearing by cell phone. I cannot remember another time in my career where request to appear by phone was never denied unless there was a technical problem.
Nonetheless they continued in my absence. With the email handed to him, Nishikawa, knowing I had just been in the hospital went ahead and gave BMO the order dismissing my case. Even the one part which is definitely a triable issue, their obligation to provide me as an executor any information the deceased would be entitled to.
Also, without argument he awarded $20,000 in costs against me in favour of BMO. Here’s another example of them getting to commit fraud lie and put false evidence in the court, and I have to pay them for the privilege.
I should also mention here in this discussion of judges who ignore Doctor’s certificates, fail to consider that there are issues of privacy in people’s health. If a doctor provides a letter which indicates somebody cannot work, what more are you entitled to unless there is some suggestion that the issue of the illness is not true. This was not the case for me. I had cancer operation in 2014, spinal surgery in 2015, and other ailments which I don’t feel are required knowledge for the court for the public. Any suggestion by any of those judges or counsel that there was some question as to my health, could certainly be documented by the trauma I suffered from Conway’s judgement.I lost total respect for the judicial system and the concept of Justice that I had spent 40 years of my life dedicated to. I lost my practice, I lost my home, I lost my health. Any suggestion that I did all that to avoid arguing the motion with BMO is ridiculous.
I am presently forced to appeal Nishikawa’s order. Personally, I do not see how denying an opportunity to be heard in such circumstances would be seen by anyone to be bias, lacked impartiality and fairness.
I personally don’t see, in the judgements above, the honouring of the principal, that not only should justice be done, it should be seen to be done. In those instances where judges ignored or criticized without basis the doctor’s writings, I do not think a reasonable person would say that there was not an element of bias and unfairness. Tough to be fair and reasonable when one of the parties is not there,
I became a lawyer because I believed in justice and to fight injustice. I will continue to pursue justice in this matter because people or corporations should not so blatantly and arrogantly commit frauds. be allowed to come to court and lie about it, and get away with it. no faith now
This will not end if they’re lucky enough to defraud and defeat the legal system again. I shall warn as many as I can in any appropriate manner. I shall certainly be sending copies to most of Canada’s financial editors. I can prove my claims to them with existing sworn evidence. Hopefully at some point we can stop this kind of conduct from being carried on here or condoned by Canadian Courts.
I am somewhat amazed that no one in authority at BMO ever considered, that they had committed fraud and lied, and should discuss it with the victim now with sufficient evidence to show their wrongdoing. This could have been resolved quickly and relatively cheaply. Instead the criminal culture at BMO spent huge amounts of your money (if your client or customer of BMO’s) to fight it.
I will be pursuing BMO and the people who are the directing mind of the corporations, with evidence of crimes committed by the corporations and the employees they are responsible for.
I’ll be buying shares of BMO and will be at all of the shareholders meetings with my material and my questions. I will take all appropriate steps available to me as a shareholder to continue to get to the bottom of this. I will be doing further research on those individuals who are running this organization. I will not stop until I get an answer and explanation as to what went on, why they took the position they did. What they’re prepared to do to make the situation right. In some assurance, backed up by documentation, if they are taking steps to make sure this does not happen again.
If I or anyone in my family or my friends had money or investments or any business with BMO, given my experience I would withdraw it and place it in a safer institution. If I was a client of BMO , who did not remove their money, I would look very carefully at their paperwork and their reporting. Given my dealings with BMO and their lawyers I would have to say that they are completely untrustworthy. For an institution based on trust this is a complete failure. They have proven that there focus is to put their interests before the interests of the client
These companies have a protected trust and fiduciary duty to the public. I think it’s time they take it more seriously than they did in my case and recognize that they are not above the law.
The above is the opinion and experience of the author as a litigant and a victim.
The law firm of Baker and Baker, a family law firm in Toronto, put false evidence before the court and suborned perjury. In doing so they aided and abetted their client Wendi Laski and BMO Nesbitt Burns in defrauding her father’s estate, the government of Canada, and her brother Wayne.
The case revolved around allegations that Wendi Laski, the deceased’s daughter had used fraud and undue influence to change all her father’s accounts into joint accounts with survivorship to her, thereby leaving nothing for her brother Wayne. This was all done while Harold Laski was under palliative care in the last three months of his life under unusual and suspicious circumstances. Prior to that, all the money in question was in Harold’s name alone.
There was ample evidence of undue influence with suspicious dealings and transfers out of the ordinary course: large transfers ( the entire estate) of funds near the death of Harold Laski
All contacts with the banks and Mr. Yu were initiated by Wendi not Mr. Laski. There were serious suspicious transfers and dealings far outside of the normal course of business
There were few if any of the factors the Supreme Court of Canada would consider evidence of meeting the burden of rebutting the presumption of undue influence. The circumstances surrounding the signing of the documents both with the TD Bank and BMO was very suspicious and unclear. There was no independent legal advice, despite evidence that Ms. Hamilton, the lawyer who had drafted the will had told Harold Laski in writing to seek legal advice before he made any further transfers
Wendi had lied to Wayne on a consent recording, about what was happening with the accounts. She clearly led Wayne to believe that he would get what he was expecting from the will. This is clearly a lie as she had already arranged to keep all the money for herself. She further indicated that we should not touch the bank accounts. She said we didn’t know what needed to be paid and she hadn’t “taken a penny”. This of course was a lie as she had cleared out most if not all of the bank accounts from the TD on the morning of her father’s funeral and deposited the bulk of those immediately in her own name at the BM0
She lied in her testimony under oath about her conversations with Harold about his intentions. In one examination she swore under oath that she had not discussed these issues of her father’s intentions with him prior to his death. She only became aware of the money was hers after he died and she went to the bank and to BMO. The very next day, still under oath she denied that she had said it. When reminded she had said that, she continued to deny saying it. She then went on to give a completely different diametrically opposed and totally inconsistent with her previous testimony, now indicating she had talked with her father before his death and knew that the money was to be hers.
These two completely contradictory and opposite statements under oath with no correction or choice or explanation between the two by Wendi or her counsel. dealing with Harold’s intentions, were the central issue of the case. There was no evidence that Harold had changed his mind save and except for the false evidence of one Norman Yu and BMO described below
The first problem was that the details of this crucial evidence were concealed by Mr. Yu, his employer, BMO Nesbitt Burns, and Wendi Laski for almost four (4) years after the death of Mr. Laski. It did not come out until they chose to divulge it only one month before the trial. Norman Yu and Wendi Laski refused to answer questions about how this evidence came about nor give any explanation for the four-year delay in bringing it forward in these unusual and suspicious circumstances . This and the meetings between Wendi, her lawyers, BMO and Norman Yu to discuss this evidence secretly, were ignored by the judge.
The real problem with this evidence was that it was not true. Norman Yu testified that Wendi was in the room with him when her father said he wanted to disinherit Wayne, because he was abusing him, and leave everything to Wendi.
Wendi and her lawyers, never raised this evidence during the four years of litigation. She never relayed confirmed or corroborated that meeting. Not once, in any form, did Wendi claim, that she had been in the room with Norman Yu when Harold Laski expressed his intentions or that she even knew what the reasoning for those intentions were.
Is it believable or reasonably possible in these circumstances that Wendi would have had this crucial information before the litigation commenced and never revealed it?
Given those facts, it is not within the balance of probabilities that Mr. Yu’s evidence was true.
Further significant indicator that Norman Yu’s evidence was not true, occurred in August 2012 when the parties were before Justice Nordheimer to freeze the funds, which he did. Would this not had been the time, if it was true, to bring up this evidence that Wendi and Norman heard from Harold on January 10 2012 as to his intentions to give the money to Wendi because Wayne was bullying him. That was not true. They did not bring it up because it was not true. Donald Baker told me and my counsel that he had heard this (what Norman Yu had to say) in July 2012 but had “promised not to tell”
When being cross-examined, Wendi was asked about the evidence of Norman Yu that she would rely on. Andrea Di Battista would not let her answer claiming it was privileged as it resulted from of purportedly without prejudice meeting where Norman Yu in January 2013 gave some but not all of his story. Had Norman Yu’s evidence been true, Andrea Di Battista would have known it from Wendi and would be required to answer questions on that evidence. This is a further indication that Norman Yu had lied.
A further example of their dishonesty revolved around Wayne’s allegation that the money was in Harold’s account in his name alone at the time of his death, and was transferred after he died. There were phone calls and other evidence to support this. Wendi swore in an affidavit that the money was not transferred before but after Harold died. He had passed March 13 2012.
“48 The Direction was accepted by BMO Nesbitt Burns Inc. on February 29, 2012. Although the securities were not deposited into BMO Joint Account # 4551381314 in advance of March 13, 2012. the Direction was irrevocable and therefore the instruction could not be changed once BMO Nesbitt Burns accepted the Direction.”
Despite this specific sworn evidence and the admitted highly, suspicious sloppy and out of the ordinary course of business handling of the transfer documents, and in light of no credible evidence to the contrary, in essence saying that Wendi’s sworn statement was not credible. Baker and Baker who had drafted the affidavit and had it sworn by Wendi in essence by not challenging the judge, by implication, now denied Wendi’s sworn statement
For me, this was devastating. For someone who entered law and fought all my life because of my deep commitment to justice. I could not believe that with all Wendi, BMO and their lawyers lies and inconsistent and suspicious evidence that evil could triumph so easily. All that is left is to complete my fight against injustice and dirty stains of perjury.
Beyond the personal injustice and damage, the result of the disgraceful actions of Baker and Baker through Donald Baker and Andrea Di Battista was to bring the Administration of Justice into disrepute.
Wendi Laski with the help of her friend Norman Yu and BMO, got away with committing fraud. The victims were the Estate, Wayne, and The Government.
Wendi, her lawyers, Norman Yu, BMO and their lawyers got away with putting false and perjured evidence before the court.
This conduct not only brings the Administration of Justice into disrepute, but cuts to the very heart of our judicial system. In my view lawyers who knowingly put false evidence before the court should be disbarred.
This kind of sleazy behavior by lawyers brings the profession into disrepute and supports the negative opinion of lawyers as dishonest and dishonorable held by a lot of the public.
Another sad example of conduct which in my view was improper was a the distribution, all to Wendi, a relatively small amounts monies, I believe were left her in the will.
When they first contacted me and asked me to consent to this distribution, I responded that I don’t think it had anything to do with me, nor did they need anything from me to do the distribution.
Most notably, when Wendi with Brian’s knowledge and consent, gave all the monies in the bank accounts and investment accounts to herself, Brian indicated that they did it because that’s what the will said. I was not consulted or advised of the actions they were taking. Why now for a rather small amount of money did they need my consent. I wrote them advising that given the fact that their client had committed fraud and lied under oath, and that the Baker firm knowingly put false evidence before the court, I did not trust any of them and would not deal with them.
While they harassed me, I was served with motion material to release the money. Again they had cleared the bulk of the estate and given it to Wendi without any knowledge or involvement on my part. It was not necessary to involve me.
I have been in deteriorating health for many years. The corrupt judgement, clients and lawyers putting false evidence before the court, caused me to break down. I lost my law practice, and house. I have had previous medical certificates, as I had been ill for some time. I had a medical certificate from my doctor indicating that I could not work for several months. I had not been well enough to prepare materials and certainly was not well enough to argue the motion. I was asking for an adjournment on that basis.
I participated by telephone in this motion. I advised the judge that they had done this kind of transfer without me for a large amount of money before and it didn’t require me. I have also advised the court that regardless of the fact that they didn’t need me to transfer that money. Further, I advised the court that Wendi, Brian, Donald Baker, and Andrea Di Batista had lied to me and lied to the court and for that reason I did not want to deal with them.
The matter came before Mme. Justice Dietrich in Superior Court on Wednesday the 17th day of July. As I was not physically able to attend I had contacted a company called CourtCall which the Ontario Court uses when lawyers are unable to appear. CourtCall connects counsel, opposing counsel, and the judge by video and audio. I made the necessary arrangements. The day before the hearing, CourtCall, notified me that they would not be able to provide the service as the court had moved the hearing two floors down.
I participated by telephone. I advised the judge that Wendi and Brian had done distributions together, without me, for a large amount of money before and it didn’t require me. I have also advised the court that regardless of the fact that they didn’t need me to transfer that money. Further, I advised the court that Wendi, Brian, Donald Baker, and Andrea Di Batista had lied to me and lied to the court and for that reason I did not want to deal with them.
I also advised the court as Dietrich continued, that as a result of my health, I did not feel comfortable or capable of arguing the motion at this time. Despite the above she went ahead and granted the order for the transfer, which I had never opposed, and then went on to order costs of $7500 against me. It’s bad enough to have your family rip you off. It’s bad enough when you’re dealing with unethical lawyers. It’s bad enough when a judge conducts herself corruptly as I set out in my blog, “Justice Perverted, Corrupted, and Denied by Judge Barbara Conway” on truthlikewater on WordPress.com but then a succession of judges decided that I had to pay for being defrauded by Wendi, her lawyers, BMO and their lawyer
As to the truth of this, I invite Baker and Baker, Donald Baker, and Andrea di Battista to sue me. They won’t, just as BMO threatened but did not follow through on a lawsuit for defamation for the blog posts BMO DEFRAUDS INVESTOR CLIENT’S ESTATE and BMO NESBIT BURNS COMMITS CRIMES. WHO IS RESPONSIBLE ? to be found in my blog truthlikewater on WordPress.com. I would be pleased if any of Baker and Baker, and Andrea Di Battista, Donald Baker, BMO or their lawyers sued me for defamation. There is ample evidence to prove the contents of these blogs. The Truth is a defense.
All Above is the opinion and experience of the author as litigant and victim and to provide some comfort to other victims who are not alone and to hope this does not happen to others.
BMO DEFRAUDS INVESTOR CLIENT’S ESTATE
the contents of this article are the opinions of the BMO DEFRAUDS INVESTOR CLIENT’S ESTATE author as victim and litigant.
BMO Nesbitt Burns conspired with one sibling to defraud a client’s estate and another sibling out of their inheritance. Their efforts included fabricating and concealing alleged evidence. It culminated in providing false testimony under oath, in my view, and caused extensive damage.
The case of Laski v. Laski revolved around allegations that Wendi Laski, the deceased’s daughter had used fraud and undue influence to change all his accounts from Harold alone, into joint accounts with survivorship to her, thereby defrauding the estate and leaving nothing for her brother Wayne. This was all done while Harold Laski was under palliative care in the last three months of his life. There was no credible evidence that he knew of the changes. The evidence was quite the opposite.
Harold Laski, at 88, was proud of the fact that he was completely self-sufficient. In mid-December 2011, he fell to his knees and could not get up. From that moment until he passed away on March 13, 2012 he was under 24-hour palliative care. That day he fell to his knees, his life as he knew it was over. He would live the next three months under 24-hour palliative care at the hospital and then later sent home to die. That day he fell to his knees, the bulk of his estate was in his name alone. Over those next three months, his daughter Wendi Laski arranged to have all those accounts made joint with right of survivorship to her. This was done under suspicious and unusual circumstances outside of the normal course of business.
Harold Laski left a will dividing the bulk of his estate 60% to his daughter Wendi, and 40% to his son Wayne. Another sibling had received his share by getting his parents house 20 years earlier. Harold had advised both Wayne and Wendi of his wishes and shown them a copy of the will.
At the time of his death, Harold had his investment accounts with BM0 Nesbitt Burns (also referred to as BMO which includes the employees and management of BMO Nesbitt Burns). The account representative was a man named Norman Yu. The week following Harold’s passing, Wayne phoned Norman Yu to discuss the accounts. Contrary to what he’d been expecting, he was advised by Norman that “all of the accounts were in Wendi’s name alone”.
Wayne was totally shocked. He advised Norman that he was an executor of the estate as well as a beneficiary. He asked Norman directly whether he had any information relating to how this happened. Did Harold say anything to him about this? Norman refused to answer. This was the beginning of an almost four-year fight with BMO Nesbitt Burns to get that information. They refused and stonewalled. They made it clear they would not provide any information and would vigourously oppose any attempt to get information from them or Norman Yu.
Wayne realized that something was clearly wrong and he could get no explanation, cooperation or information from his sister and BMO. He had no choice but to turn to the courts. Anyone who has ever been in fight over an estate can tell you what a nightmare the entire experience becomes. That is another story for another day. The focus here, is the shocking and illegal conduct of BMO Nesbitt Burns in helping one sibling steal from another.
Norman Yu is a central character. He committed most of the fraudulent acts in dealing with Harold Laski’s estate. I want to make it clear that I place most of the blame on BMO Nesbitt Burns. That includes any of the employees and management who were involved. They were clearly being, or should have been, aware of it. BMO immediately hired some very expensive lawyers to deal with the matter. The fact is that they circled the wagons and didn’t appear to ask the obvious questions about the suspicious circumstances outside of the normal course of business. They did that knowing that they were causing damage, but did not care. Ultimately it seems clear to me that they allowed Norman Yu to lie under oath and allow that evidence to go before a court.
The evidence of the involvement and conduct of BMO Nesbitt Burns, will in my view, show improper conduct by an employee which was arrogantly and aggressively backed up by management with more impropriety. All this time they were aware, or should have been aware, of what was being done in their name and the harm and damage it was causing.
The nightmare began, March 19, 2012, when Norman Yu told Wayne Laski that the accounts were all in the name of Wendi alone. That would prove to be not true at the time. They were still in the process of being stolen and were still in a joint account with Wendi and Harold Laski. The transfer from Harold Laski alone to Wendi and Harold was according to the evidence, not done before Harold had died but after. When Harold died, the money was in his name alone and should have been divided in accordance with his will.
There followed, an expensive legal battle to get any kind of record of disclosure and financial information from BMO and Wendi. All this time, Wayne was asking BMO, their lawyers and Wendi’s lawyers for any information or evidence they had with respect to Harold’s intentions or any explanation as to how the money ended up in Wendi’s name alone.
Despite constant efforts, both verbally and in writing, to find out what Norman or BMO had to say, they aggressively continued to stonewall for almost 4 years.
A mediation, required by the Court, had been scheduled for May 2013. In January 2013, Wayne’s lawyer at the time, arranged with counsel for BMO, to have a without prejudice meeting with Norman Yu. This over the objections of Wayne, who wanted this evidence under oath. BMO insisted that this was the only way they would produce Norman Yu without a vigourous fight. The stated purpose of this meeting was for the lawyers for Wendy and Wayne to hear from Norman Yu, for the first time. This turned out to be a false premise. At the end of the meeting, Mr. Donald Baker, Wendi’s lawyer, announced to Wayne and his lawyer, to their shock and surprise, that he had heard all this before. This had occurred at a secret meeting with BMO and Norman Yu in July 2012 where they made him “promise not to tell”.
In the January 2013, without prejudice, meeting, Norman Yu stated the following:
Up until the time Harold Laski went into the hospital, he had nothing but nice things to say about his son Wayne and was very proud of him. When he went to see Harold at the hospital he said he did not want Wayne to have any of his assets and wanted to leave everything to Wendi. As the litigation proceeded Wayne discovered other evidence about their dealings that had been obstructed or concealed by Wendi and BMO.
Given that the meeting was without prejudice, nothing said in the meeting could be used. Throughout the rest of the course of the litigation BMO and Wendi refused to even acknowledge the meeting, confirm or provide any information, or answer any questions about BMO’s dealings with Harold or Wendi. BMO refused to explain the significant delay in bringing this information forward. They continued to conceal this evidence for almost three more years until December 2015 when they arranged with Wendi’s lawyers to produce Norman Yu to be examined under oath. This was a little more than a month before the case went to court in January 2016.
In his December 2015 examination, Norman gave evidence that he had not said in the without prejudice meeting three years before.
Wendi had contacted Norman Yu while Harold was in the hospital following which Norman came to see Harold in the hospital. Harold had not called Norman Yu. On January 10, 2012, immediately after Harold was released from the hospital and sent home under 24-hour palliative care to die, Norman came to visit Harold. Again, Harold had not called Norman. It was Wendi who continued to call Norman. He brought with him the papers he had prepared to direct the transfer of Harold’s investment account from his name alone into an account joint with Wendi with right of survivorship.
The dealings with those documents by BMO were suspicious and outside of the normal course of business. To begin with, it would be normal and prudent to affect the transfer right away. This was even more urgent, because Harold was clearly dying.
The trail of this paper and the transaction it represented is very unusual and troubling in the circumstances. Despite Harold’s quickly failing health, and the apparent urgency, as evidenced by Norman’s visit January 10, as soon as Harold got home from the hospital, the transfer did not take place for over two months. The transfer papers remained in Norman Yu’s briefcase until late February. It was at that time on February 29, that the transfer direction document was supposedly acknowledged and accepted by BMO. Not only was the handling of this document, to this point, outside of the ordinary course of business, it was a tremendous risk for Norman and BMO. If Harold died before the transfer was done then the account would be in his name alone at the time.
This is not the end of the curious and unusual path of this document and the transfer. After being approved the document would be sent immediately to the department where the transfer would be done. The actual transfer, I believe the evidence clearly shows, was not done until after Harold Laski had died. This is supported by a sworn statement by Wendi Laski:
48 The Direction was accepted by BMO Nesbitt Burns Inc. on February 29, 2012. Although the securities were not deposited into BIM Joint Account # 4551381314 in advance of March 13, 2012. the Direction was irrevocable and therefore the instruction could not be changed once BMO Nesbitt Burns accepted the Direction.
According to BMO records, the transfer was dated March 12, 2012. This was conveniently the day before Harold died. This was in direct contradiction to Wendi’s clear and detailed statement on the issue. Wendi’s statement is consistent with the evidence that Wendi knew this because immediately after she was informed of her father’s passing, one of her first calls, if not the first, was to her father’s financial advisor Norman Yu. Wouldn’t that be the first person any of us would call after hearing their father died? Wendi says this was to tell him Harold had died. Why would he have to know so quickly? Why was he the first person she called. It is consistent with the evidence that the call was to let Norman know that he should make the transfer happen. They didn’t know how long Harold would live. If they had affected the transfer before Harold died, he might have received a statement showing a joint account. They did not want and could not let that to happen. They had to wait until Harold died and backdated the transfer to the day before. That would explain the odd course of this document very much outside of the normal course of business. In the normal course of business any similar type of transaction at most financial institutions would be done right away, or if the circumstances required, within a few days. It would also explain and is consistent with Wendi Laski’s sworn statement on the timing of the transfer.
In little over a week, the account had been transferred into Wendi’s name alone. The evidence on how this was done is contradictory and suspicious.
I am trying to limit myself to BMO’s involvement in the case. To put BMO’s involvement in context, it is helpful to provide a brief overview of the rest of the case. A review of Wendi’s conduct combined and interwoven with BMO’s, shows how frighteningly easy it was for a criminal like Wendi Laski to take advantage of BMO’s corporate culture to aid and abet her in committing the fraud.
There is a lot of evidence to show Wendi’s conversion of the entire estate. The case is filled with evidence of Wendi’s fraudulent conduct. She lies in her examinations under oath, she lies in a conversation, recorded with her knowledge and consent, to her brother Wayne about the estate.
Her actions also speak volumes. Wendi lived in Los Angeles. On the advice of the medical staff, she came to Toronto when Harold went into the hospital.
Most of her involvement in the transfer of Harold’s BMO investment account was detailed above. She did the same thing with the Toronto Dominion Bank where Harold kept his accounts. She contacted them. Harold did not. She had them prepare documents for the transfer of the accounts jointly with Harold with right of survivorship to her. An employee of the TD Bank came, at Wendi’s request, to the hospital where Harold signed the documents.
The circumstances surrounding the signing of these financial transfers documents are filled with confusing and contradictory evidence from Wendi and the financial people in attendance. There is no evidence that the documents were properly explained to Harold, or that he even knew what he was signing.
There was other evidence which demonstrates the kind of person BMO was conspiring with, assisting and enabling to commit fraud. One further example was that at her first opportunity, which was the morning of her father’s funeral, Wendi attended at the TD Bank and transferred all the accounts into her name alone at Bank of Montréal.
This is where the case takes its strangest twist. This is where BMO’s fraudulent and abusive conduct is seriously egregious. At Yu’s examination, Mr. Parley, tried to argue that Yu no longer works for BMO and therefore his evidence would not bind them. Norman Yu has always and continues to be represented by BMO’s lawyers. At all material times, he was employed by and acted on behalf of BMO who gave their stamp of approval to and vigourously defended his actions.
In his December 2015 examination, Norman Yu provided details he had not mentioned in the without prejudice meeting. This was under oath. He gave the only direct evidence, that was relied upon, by a Judge, who was misled, of Harold Laski’s intentions. His evidence was that Harold was upset because Wayne was bullying him. He wanted to leave everything to Wendi.
The other new and significant disclosure was that Wendi was in the room with Norman when Harold gave reasons to disinherit Wayne and give everything to Wendi.
Forgetting for a moment that Wayne had no opportunity to examine Wendy about this, it is very problematic on its face.
If Norman Yu was telling the truth, Wendi would’ve heard the same evidence he heard from Harold directly regarding his intentions. Wendi never raised this evidence on her own. Not once, did Wendy or her lawyers corroborate or provide any evidence of her meeting with Harold and Norman. Not once, did she mention that she had heard her father express his intentions.
One would have to ask why this is so. If Wendi had this evidence, is it believable within the balance of probabilities, that Wendi and her lawyers would not have provided this evidence at the beginning of the litigation
The answer is that Norman Yu was not telling the truth. This evidence when combined with his actions and his dealing with the January 10 transfer direction lead to the conclusion that Wendi and BMO conspired to transfer Harold Laski’s account into Wendi’s name alone thereby defeating Harold’s will. Why he did it one may never know. It appears most likely, that the story was concocted by Norman Yu with some assistance, to cover up Norman and BMO’s suspicious and unusual handling of the documents outside of the normal course of business. It is certainly consistent with his evidence that he wanted to keep the account. There are many other reasons one can think of that would motivate Norman Norman to commit fraud with Wendi. Whether Norman received money or some other consideration will most probably stay between them. The fact remains that the evidence shows what they did which was clearly a fraud on the estate and on Wayne.
One thing is clear. Norman Yu’s conduct in conjunction with Wendi’s was suspicious and outside the normal course of business. The evidence as it stands leads to the conclusion that Norman Yu lied under oath. This, combined with BMO, adopting the actions of, and, protecting Norman Yu knowingly caused serious damage to Wayne Laski
BMO may try to argue that these were mostly the acts of Norman Yu, a rogue employee. The problem is BMO knew or should have known what was going on. Wayne Laski made it clear to BMO that there was a problem and he was concerned about their conduct. Through their lawyer’s, they stonewalled and allowed the expensive litigation to continue involving the estate of one of their clients and a current client against an executor and beneficiary to the estate. Knowing this, forgetting for a moment its obligations to the estate of its deceased client, they withheld evidence, which would have, and ultimately did end the litigation. This while all the parties, including their current client were expending large sums of money engaged in an estate battle.
Even if you assume (contrary to his own evidence) for a moment that Norman Yu was alone with Harold when he expressed the intentions, that Norman Yu claims. Is it believable that Norman Yu would have this information and not tell his client, Wendi Laski, about his conversation with Harold at the first opportunity he spoke with her after Harold’s death? Why would he not tell her that she didn’t have to fight with Wayne? He had evidence that Harold wanted to disinherit Wayne and for her to have all the money.
BMO has even argued that they would not provide the information to Wayne, because he was questioning their conduct. Given their attitude, he had indicated that he might have to bring an action against them if they continued their conduct. They had an obligation to share the information regarding the estate of their client with his executors. If, as it turned out, their conduct was improper and damaging, it was no excuse not to provide the information to Wayne as an executor of the estate.
Wayne eventually had to sue BMO to try and get the concealed information. BMO changed their lawyers, retaining the high powered elite boutique litigation firm of Lenczner Slaght. Wayne also sued the directors of BMO Nesbitt Burns. This was done, first and foremost because Wayne felt that the management was responsible for the frauds of BMO and its employees, particularly when the details are available to them. I believe that the people who run these companies are responsible and should do all they can to ensure that this kind of conduct is not done in their name. The second reason to sue the directors personally was so that they would be able to read what had happened and was happening and be given the opportunity to consider it and do something. They could no longer deny knowledge of the facts. The third reason that the directors were included, was to get BMO’s attention. That it did. Their lawyers wanted the directors to be released and were nice to Wayne until he let the directors out. He did so as not to complicate and slow the progress of the lawsuit. I believe that directors of companies should be held responsible for frauds committed by employees. They should have responsibility for the corporate culture that allows this kind of thing, to occur, without proper oversight. They should be held accountable for the failure to punish offenders and take remedial action to ensure that it does not happen.
They continued the position taken by their client’s previous lawyers that they would not discuss the evidence of Norman Yu nor provide any information. It was this firm, most particularly Andrew Parley, who represented Norman Yu and the BMO in the examinations.
Mr. Parley refused to let Norman Yu answer questions explaining the almost four-year delay in bringing this information forward in the circumstances. He confirmed the irrelevance and insignificance of the information provided by Mr. Yu at the January 2013 without prejudice meeting when he stated for the record that this information was coming out for the first time now.
Continuing the obstructionist policy of BMO and their lawyers, Parley initially refused to let Mr. Yu answer questions involving the July 2012 meeting with Wendi’s lawyer Donald Baker. He eventually acknowledged the meeting but would not provide further detail. I see these as very relevant questions relating to the origin and development of this definitive evidence. It was relevant to this evidence to find out about its evolution, why it took almost four years to come out and why the vigourous efforts to conceal it.
Wendi never raised this evidence of her meeting with Harold and Norman Yu in the entire course of the litigation. Why?
The answer is simple and strongly supported by the evidence. It is not true. Harold Laski did not say those things to Norman Yu. Norman, probably with help, made the story up after the fact to protect himself and BMO for his actions with Wendi and his conduct in mishandling the documents outside of the normal course of business under suspicious circumstances Most of this information only came into the hands of Wayne Laski over time through persistent efforts in the face of vigourous obstruction by Wendi and BMO.
For those questions left unanswered about the content, development, presentation, and four-year delay in revealing this crucial evidence, one must wonder where were BMO’s lawyers? Why did they not ask the obvious questions? Wilful blindness? Perhaps because there are no reasonable believable answers.
There is another issue, related to BMO’s disgusting, fraudulent, callous and abusive conduct, not yet raised. This is the worst thing that BMO did. On top of improper dealings with Wendi to assist her in defrauding the estate and her brother. In addition to making up a story to protect themselves which they allowed to be repeated under oath. Further to allowing that evidence, which they did or should have known was false and would be damaging to Wayne financially to be put before a court in the hearing. They sat Wayne in the room and tried to tell him that his father had lied to him. They told him his father deceived him. That Harold had lied when he confirmed to Wayne and his grand children, his desire and his intentions with respect to his estate. Considering the above, this was not true. It was most cruel and hurtful. Those involved on BMO’s side seemed to have no conscience or concern.
By their own evidence, this information about Harold Laski’s intentions had been intentionally and vigourously concealed by be BMO for almost for four years. According to their evidence it had be concealed by Wendi and her lawyers for the same period as she would’ve heard it with Norman Yu on January 10, 2012. The truth, supported by Donald Baker’s admission, is that he had heard it, for the first time, in a secret meeting in July 2012. It was only revealed to Wayne just one month before the case was heard. It was not tested by thorough cross-examination in front of a fair and knowledgeable judge where these frivolous obstructive objections would not be upheld and these relevant questions would have to be answered. In almost 40 years of experience as a litigator, it is hard to imagine, given its suspicious history, contradictions, and unexplained four-year delay in bringing it forward, evidence like Norman and BMO’s being given any weight.
The damage done by their egregious fraudulent conduct was explosively devastating financially and emotionally. Wayne fought back. As a lawyer, he could do so. One can only imagine what abusive, self interested conduct they get away with inflicting on people who are not able to challenge them. Given the corporate culture at BMO exposed and encouraged here one can only shudder at the thought of trusting them with your retirement.
In this case, BMO’s defiant arrogance during concealing and covering up their criminal conduct speaks volumes of how they see themselves and their place in society. They demonstrated here that they feel they have right to cheat, lie, and abuse their clients and the public with impunity. They will put those lies before the courts to protect their own interests even when they are wrong. This sense of entitlement is entrenched in their corporate culture where honesty, truth, and good faith are sacrificed to their own financial interests. They do it because they can. They do it because they have the money and power to crush almost anyone who challenges them.
There is another reason for the arrogance of BMO and other large institutions. They are often shown undue deference by the courts. Why would BMO lie? That is a question, in my experience, that is asked by judges as rhetorical. They often don’t seek an answer. It is not the institution that lies. it is the human beings that are their employees. Norman Yu made a point of the importance to him of new business. The constant pressure, in the accepted corporate culture, to produce and make money for themselves and their employers is sadly the norm. What lengths will some people go to succeed? It is limited only by the scope of human nature and the ethics of the individual involved. I do not think it is difficult to imagine what some people would do if they made a mistake or did something improper. What would they do to cover it up in the kind of culture BMO has demonstrated in this case?
If BMO, or any other institution, seriously encourages ethical behaviour and, takes proper steps when it is breached to demonstrate that it will not be tolerated, then, although financially responsible for the wrongdoing of their employees maintains their own ethical reputation and does the right thing to make it part of their corporate culture.
Sadly, that is not my experience generally with large institutions. They are arrogant and difficult to deal with.
In this case, BMO is more culpable than Norman Yu. That’s not to say that Norman Yu’s conduct did not demonstrate a complete lack of moral and ethical character. He is certainly someone I would never want to deal with and feel badly for anyone who does. BMO circled the wagons around Norman Yu and whoever at BMO helped and supported him. They embarked on a calculated, fraudulent, harmful course of action. They not only adopted and defended Norman’s conduct, but knowingly pursued of course of conduct which continued to cause compounding damage to Wayne. They continue to defend their conduct to this day. They have learned nothing. They have just become more emboldened. Norman’s conduct must reflect the corporate culture created at BMO. Their strenuous defence of his conduct, as well as their own, made their lack of a moral compass or conscience a clear reflection of that culture. From the top down.
This is the case that cries out for punitive damages. Punitive damages are awarded by courts, in addition to the actual damages, to punish and discourage especially egregious conduct. In Canada, the amount of punitive damages is tied to, and generally is not to exceed the actual damages. It will be argued that this approach is woefully inappropriate in dealing with this kind of conduct by large rich institutions like BMO. There are circumstances where the damage is relatively modest but the conduct clearly requires a punitive award. For a rich institution, this would be insignificant and would not serve to discourage them or in any way encourage them to amend their behaviour and corporate culture. It would amount to no more than a mere license fee when they got caught. To be true to the intent of punitive damages, in such circumstances, the punitive damages should be significant enough to accomplish their stated purpose. In this case, in the event of a significant punitive damages award, a fund will be set up to assist others who are the victims of BMO and similar institutions.
If you or your parents have your investments with BMO, in my opinion, I would move them. I do not believe that this is by any means an isolated incident. This is just one where they got caught by someone willing to challenge them and follow through. The case continues. All of this will go before a jury who will be able to assess the evidence presented and pass judgement on the conduct of BMO and consequences of their actions.
The only issue that is left between BMO and myself is the issue of whether they owed me a duty, as an executor of the estate, to advise me of this alleged evidence. The law is clear that an executor stands in the shoes of the deceased and is entitled to any information the deceased would be entitled to. I can find no case that says otherwise. It is a well-established a principle
From the beginning, the week after my father passed away, and I discovered that things were not as they should have been, I asked BMO for any information they had on my father’s intention or explanation for the circumstances.
For four years they resisted vigourously sharing that information with me. My argument is that if they told me at the time and were honest and transparent about their handling of the matter that may have avoided the litigation, as their evidence was the determinative factor for the trial judge.
BMO has brought a motion to have my claim struck based on the fact that all of these issues are res judicata having been decided by Conway at the original motion. Conway did not rule on the issue of whether they breached their duty to advise me. In reality they didn’t advise me because it didn’t happen. Had it been true with Wendi in the room, she and her lawyers would’ve had that information before the litigation began. Yet they never once as I have pointed out raised it all in any form other than putting forward the evidence of Norman Yu which they had to know in the circumstances was false.
But even excepting for the sake of argument Conway’s decision, the issue of their obligation to provide me with the information is an important one. If they are allowed to get away with not honoring their fiduciary duty it is a further blot on the judicial system.
The motion itself has had an interesting history with several judges making bias and faulty orders.
When the matter first came up before Judge Chiapata, she made an unusual order, not raised by either of the Counsel, on her own volition to order that there would be no cross examinations on the affidavits. This in a case where credibility is a huge issue. This where affidavits were being sworn by Andrew Parley, who I have accused of improper conduct during the estate summary motion. This certainly would not appear to any reasonable person that being denied the right of cross-examination as I had been denied in the motion certainly would not give one confidence that there was procedural fairness.
I appeared by video Court call for those appearances, as I’m in poor health and have been for some time. I mean treated by several doctors who felt that given the medical issues and treatments that I could not work at all.
The matter came before Justice Wilson. There wasn’t solicitor of 40 years, officer of the court, and a certified medical professional who had provided a note indicating that I would not be able to work for three months. With her superior medical knowledge, Wilson ignored both me and the doctor in essence saying we were lying. She set the motion well within the three months, and made it peremptory on me. That meant I could not seek another adjournment. This order was without factual or legal basis. No one had suggested that the matter was delayed. No one had suggested that I had delayed it. It was sloppy Judgitis clearly demonstrated bias. Given my medical condition, this improper order caused serious health issues to relapse.
The matter was then set by I believe Judge Nishikawa who indicated that the matter would go ahead unless I brought further medical documentation. Just prior to the date for attendance, I was hospitalized For more than a week. I was released Thursday night before Good Friday. I made every attempt to get someone to appear or to set up Court call appearance. None of this was possible Easter weekend.
I sent an email to opposing counsel setting out the details above. I was just out of the hospital and the most recent medical report were not ready. Perhaps Nishikawa should realize that I don’t prepare them.
Nishikawa proceeded in my absence dismissing my claim and ordering me to pay $20,000 in costs. Another decision that certainly does not seem to be judicial.
His decision is now under appeal.
There have been a lot of odd things that have happened in the Estate Case and in my case against BMO.
I have no choice but to pursue BMO and judge Conway. I am an officer of the court. I believe in justice.
The result of the BMO’s actions and Conway’s corruption resulted in:
- fraud committed by BMO and my sister
- false and perjured evidence completely contradictory on the central issue is the case
- false evidence which had been concealed for four years was knowingly put before the court by lawyers for Wendi. It would be hard for me to believe that BMO’s lawyers did not or could easily have known that this evidence was false
- costs were awarded that had nothing to do with the laws costs in the circumstances
That brings such disrepute to the legal system that I must do everything I can to bring it to light and seek justice.
The above is the opinion and experience of the author as a litigant and a victim.