Loading articles...

Former head of Caisse mortgage subsidiary seeks $7.35 million for wrongful dismissal

MONTREAL — The former head of Otera Capital, a subsidiary of the Caisse de depot pension fund manager, is seeking about $7.35 million in a wrongful dismissal lawsuit.

Alfonso Graceffa, one of four senior executives fired in May, says he was fired without just cause following a Le Journal news report of irregularities at the Otera mortgage company, including loans to finance income properties that he owned.

The Caisse and its subsidiaries Ivanhoe Cambridge and Otera Capital are cited in the suit, filed with the Quebec Superior Court.

The allegations haven’t been tested in court.

Graceffa is seeking compensation of $3.82 million for 2.5 years of lost wages and benefits. The remaining sums are for money he says he’s owed along with $450,000 for damage to his reputation and $150,000 in punitive damages.

While an internal investigation by the Caisse identified ethical deficiencies, it didn’t find evidence of fraud, money laundering or fraudulent transactions.

On Wednesday, Graceffa announced that he would contest his dismissal, but didn’t clearly say how he would do so.

The Caisse has already indicated its intention to “vigorously” defend itself in court, if necessary, and that no compensation would be paid to the former employee.

The Canadian Press