A judge in the Canadian province of Québec has ruled that the trial of David Baazov, the founder and former CEO of Amaya, who stands accused of insider trading in relation to the company’s 2014 takeover of PokerStars, will go ahead, rejecting a defence motion to throw the case out.
On January 22, judge Salvatore Mascia said that Baazov and five others must stand trial. Acknowledging the late disclosure of documents by lawyers for the regulator the Autorité des Marchés Financiers, Mascia said the defence should be allowed time to assess the information. A new trial date has not been set but it is likely to start in the first half of 2018, reports the Globe and Mail.
Baazov, who like his fellow accused maintains his innocence of all charges and has pleaded not guilty, is alleged to have conspired to artificially increase the price of Amaya stock ahead of the audacious US$4.9bn PokerStars takeover, backed by investor Blackstone Group.
A spokesman for the AMF said the regulator was satisfied with the ruling while Baazov’s representative Adam Sharon said: “We look forward to proving our case in court and being fully vindicated.”