|Montreal businessman Tony Papa doesn't like to be called an informant. |
But over three interviews spanning 5½ hours, Papa provided information to investigators at Quebec's securities regulator — the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF). "Yes, I can help you nail whoever the hell you want to nail," Papa tells the AMF investigators on the recording. Yes, I do know what the fuck goes on. Yes. That's why ask me a straight question, I'll give you a straight answer." In the interviews, the AMF tells Papa that he and a number of others are under investigation by the AMF for manipulation of penny stocks.
| Papa was a 'close friend' to some of Montreal's top Mafia figures including Vito Rizzuto and Moreno Gallo. Rizzuto died of lung cancer in 2013. That same year, Gallo, a top underworld figure and convicted murderer, was gunned down in Mexico.|
In 2005, RCMP Project Colisée wiretapped the Rizzuto hangout — the Consenza Social Club. In one recording, organized crime figures Joe and Paolo Renda are caught on tape complaining angrily about Papa, alleging he had "fraudulently transferred" three million stock shares. In the transcript, Joe Renda is quoted as wanting "permission to grab Tony Papa alone, we put him in a basement."
|In the interviews, Papa says he is willing to co-operate with the securities regulator if it is kept confidential and "you guys can help me with some of my other problems as well." In 2013 Papa was also dealing with a Canada Revenue Agency audit that claimed he owed millions. Papa eventually paid $6 million.|
Instead of providing evidence against market manipulators, Papa says he was simply trying to sell the AMF on the idea of having him collect millions of dollars in funds. "I made it very clear. I'll charge you 50 per cent. Everything I collect I keep 50, I give you back 50 per cent" Papa told the fifth estate.