October 1, 2022

La Ronge Northerner

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Data leak in Desjardins | The industry watchdog wants to ban the mortgage broker

The industry watchdog has called for the lifetime revocation of the license of a suspected mortgage broker in a massive data theft investigation in Desjardins.

Released at 7:51 pm yesterday.

Hugo Jonkas

Hugo Jonkas
Press

Mathieu Joncas, who is also a private lender, bought “150,000 to 200,000” Desjardins customers’ confidential information without confirming their consent. During the investigation, he admitted to sharing this information with a fellow broker in January 2017.

In September 2021, the disciplinary committee of the organization d’autoréglementation du courtage immobilier du Québec (OACIQ) also found him guilty of obstructing the Syndicate trial.

Matthew Jonkas will also be allowed to engage himself in a situation of interest conflict by acting as a mortgage broker and private lender with some of his clients.

$ 100,000 list

Mathieu Joncas paid about $ 100,000 to Jean-Loup Leullier-Masse, another suspect in the data theft investigation, to obtain confidential data.

Police suspect that this private lender may have purchased information stolen from Sebastien Bowlinger-Dorval. This former Desjardins employee is the number one suspect in a police investigation into the theft of classified information from the Movement.

In 2021, Matthew Jonkas tried to convince the disciplinary committee that he was innocent (according to him, the data he acquired could be compiled from public sources). Without success.

Instead, the organization concluded that it was confidential information obtained without the permission of the broker. Unable to say whether this information actually came from the data theft at Desjardins, the broker monitoring panel determined that it may have come from a financial institution.

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In addition to customer contact information, the lists include mortgage balances, interest rates, information on loans used, and life insurance premiums.

Last February, Matthew Jonkas tried to persuade the disciplinary committee to reverse his conviction and reopen the investigation.

His lawyer said the information he purchased had not been received since the data was stolen at Desjardins. According to him, documents released as part of the police investigation indicate that the prime suspect has been stealing this information since March 2017. This is three months after the allegations against Matthew Jonkas.

However, the panel rejected his request and ruled that the data he had purchased was indeed confidential.

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According to OACIQ’s Syndicate attorney, Matthew Joncas “does not have the qualities needed to benefit from a broker’s license.”

His lawyer, Olivier Desjardins, said Matthew Jonkas could appeal against the disciplinary committee’s guilt.

Worse factors, the case says

Syndic’s attorney, Isabelle Martell, argued that there were several bad factors that led her to persuade the disciplinary committee to retain the permit.

In particular, he underscores the many obstacles that Matthew Jonkas put in the way of OACIQ Syndic during his interrogation.

“He’s trying to convince you that he wants to cooperate. He’s coming to a meeting. He’s asked to bring his computer; he’s bringing it, but there’s nothing left of it,” explains Isabel Martell.

He points out that Matthew Jonkas is an agency manager. “He oversees brokers. He’s a rich man, he should be a role model!”

The prosecutor added that for the first time in 2014, the disciplinary committee had already reprimanded two unlicensed people for encouraging them to make a mortgage.

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Isabelle Martell points out the contradictions in her interest, pointing out that Isabelle Martell, Matthew Joncas charged high fees to clients who did business with her. A borrower, in particular, pays $ 12,400 or 23% off a $ 54,000 loan before the interest is calculated. According to him, the broker “cares more about his profit than the customer’s financial profile”.

“You have no evidence of a change in his behavior, the risk of recurrence or his rehabilitation,” the lawyer said. The public can only be protected if it no longer has permission. ⁇

“Lack of judgment,” begs the defense

Instead, Matthew Jonkas’ lawyer is proposing to suspend his client’s license for seven months.

According to him, his client was unaware that the purchased data came from theft, and he was not particularly convicted.

“Mr. Jonkas, unfortunately – I think I’m sorry for saying that so bluntly in front of him – could have been legitimate, and it was foolish for him to believe that there were no more questions to ask,” says Oliver Desjardins.

The broker’s representative proposed to impose a reprimand on him for the interest fee discrepancy, as well as an order compelling him to take a course in the matter.