Amaya CE takes voluntary leave of absence in the wake of securities charges

Amaya CE takes voluntary leave of absence in the wake of securities charges

The Canadian online gambling firm Amaya has announced that its chairman and chief executive David Baazov is to take an indefinite leave of absence from the firm.

In addition to wishing to focus on his potential acquisition of the company, Baazov is keen to respond to allegations that have been levelled against him by Quebec’s security regulator AMF (aka Autorité des marchés financiers).

In addition to bringing 23 charges against him, the AMF accused Baazov of “aiding with trades while in possession of privileged information, influencing or attempting to influence the market price of the securities of Amaya inc., and communicating privileged information”.

Said allegations relate to an insider trading investigation that was launched in the wake of Amaya acquiring PokerStars in 2014.

While Baazov is paid leave, Divyesh Gadhia will serve as Amaya’s interim chairman while Rafi Ashkenazi will act as interim CE.

In a statement confirming his leave, Baazov said: “As always, I continue to be dedicated to doing the right thing for Amaya and all its stakeholders.

“I believe that stepping down in the short term will help to avoid distraction for the company and its management while I vigorously contest all allegations made against me and pursue my bid to acquire the company.”

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