Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Erwin Singh Braich

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Erwin Singh Braich

Erwin Singh Braich was born in Mission, British Columbia, in 1955. He retired in the early 1990s, and acquired a second home in La Jolla, California. He has always been a Canadian citizen and resident of British Columbia.

In 1996 he was named the Citizen of the Year by his hometown, Mission, B.C. He was unable to attend the ceremony in person, due to the fact that he was he was the only Canadian, in a group of 15 business leaders, who was meeting with U.S. Vice-president, Al Gore and Russian Premier Viktor Chernomyrdin, to discuss market reforms for former Soviet Block Countries.


In June of 1999, a lawyer from West Vancouver - Brian McLean - and his clients Glenn Walsh (a resident of Kamloops, B.C. and Valetta, Malta)/Tercon Contractors Ltd., filed a Petition in the Supreme Court of B.C., which initiated involuntary bankruptcy proceedings against Mr. Braich. This Petition was aided, in part, by Herbishan (Bobby) Singh Braich (one of Erwin’s younger brothers).

Earlier that same year, Erwin Singh Braich, a well respected and internationally known industrialist and philanthropist, was voted - Business Person of the Year - by the International Punjabi Chamber of Commerce.


In the summer and fall of 1999,McLean/Walsh/Tercon peculiarly “shopped” for any creditor to join them in their Petition. They were unable to find anyone except for Bobby Braich, as mentioned above.

Between June and October of 1999, the Petition was adjourned several times. These adjournments took place without any knowledge of, consultation with, or notice being given to 96% of the creditors.During this period in 1999, Erwin Singh Braich hired Vancouver lawyer, Gordon Elliott, an experienced bankruptcy and insolvency practitioner. By contrast, Brian McLean admits (in court transcripts) that he is not an ‘expert’ in this area of practice. Gordon Elliott was paid in excess of $100,000 by Braich, during a four month span in 1999.

After an agreement had been reached between Gordon Elliott and Brian McLean, Elliott was sent to Europe (in his capacity as an Officer of the Court) to assess the net value of the assets which were owned by Mr. Braich overseas.Elliott was voluntarily funded by Braich and sanctioned by the Court and Mr. McLean. A list of assets was provided to Elliott with instruction that he could continue going through the list, and travel from country to country, until he was satisfied and could report back to the Court that the net value of assets exceeded his debts. In fact, prior to Elliott’s return from Europe, he was so impressed, that Elliott asked Braich how he additionally could "get in on the action".

Elliott reported to the Court about his findings - on October 1, 1999. Justice Duncan Shaw heard part of the case in the morning, and quite surprisingly Justice Peter Lowry decided the matter in the afternoon. It is still unclear why two judges heard the same case in one day.Elliott clearly told everyone that there were hundreds of millions of dollars worth of net assets in Europe owned and controlled by Braich, and that the amount he owed to his creditors was relatively small.

Elliott further confirmed to the Court that due to these facts and inclusive of the net value of the assets beneficially owned in North America by Braich, the amount that Braich owed to his creditors was not at risk.In fact, Elliott’s own partner, in his law firm, was preparing a trust for one of Braich’s Canadian assets, which was worth millions of dollars ('Sandy Hill' in Abbotsford).Instead of these facts benefiting the majority of lawful creditors and Braich, it appears Elliott's confirmation of the value of Mr. Braich's assets only further motivated Walsh/McLean/Tercon to continue to try and negotiate, but truly extort a better deal for themselves.

In the case of Bobby Braich, this information only further fuelled his curiosity.Shockingly, Justice Peter Lowry, after much hesitation, pronounced an Order appointing KPMG as Receiver on October 1, 1999. Mr. Erwin Singh Braich was present in the courtroom that day, and when he tried to present overwhelming evidence on a viva voce basis, it was challenged on a mere technicality by Brian McLean.Mr. Braich and the vast majority of his creditors contend that Brian McLean and his clients Glenn Walsh/Tercon Contractors and Bobby Braich and his lawyer Shelley Fitzpatrick, had their own personal motives to initiate and support these proceedings over the course of ten years.

It is alleged that Walsh/Tercon/McLean, initiated the Petition to extort a larger percentage from Braich of the approximately U.S.$28 million Account Receivable on the books of an oil refinery know as ‘Plama’ which is located in Bulgaria.


It is believed that Bobby Braich’s motive was more of an inquisitive and vengeful nature. He was once was caught misappropriating funds from Jackson Brother’s Logging (a company which was wholly owned by the Braich brothers, and of which Erwin was CEO).When it was discovered that Bobby had been misappropriating funds, Bobby signed a restitution agreement admitting his crime, and was rehired by Erwin after family intervention.

It is believed that the humiliation of being caught stealing, coupled with him being tired of living in the shadow of his older brother, were the primary motives that he went from being a secured creditor, to an unsecured creditor (secured creditors cannot assist in a Petition the same way an unsecured creditors can, according to the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act in Canada).

It has been over a decade, since the Petition was initiated resulting in the the Court appointing KPMG as Receiver of the Estate of Erwin Singh Braich. In the years that have passed, not one creditor, besides Glenn Walsh/Tercon have contributed any funds to KPMG. Not even Bobby Braich.

Strangely, the liquidation by KPMG of the cash surrender values of life insurance policies belonging to Erwin have surpassed the Walsh/Tercon contributions.In fact Erwin Singh Braich offered KPMG in excess of $100,000, to do a forensic audit on his affairs. This offer was made over the telephone and in a four and a half hour face to face meeting, which was tape recorded with KPMG's consent. The offer was refused by Robert Rusko/KPMG. This tape is one of the items still missing from the raid conducted on Braich's hotel room in Bellingham, Washington.


The alleged bankrupt (Mr. Braich), the only secured creditor (Clock Holdings Ltd.), and many other creditors were not invited to the improperly convened, first meeting of creditors, held in November of 1999.Due to this and a myriad of other reasons, approximately one year later on September 12, 2000, Master Patterson ordered that KPMG hold this meeting of creditors. KPMG has remained in breach of the Court’s Order since it was pronounced.


In over a decade not one cross-examination has taken place, on any of the Affidavits that the court has relied upon to make all of its rulings. This despite numerous requests by creditors and Mr. Braich. In contrast, Mr. Braich has been ready, willing and able to be cross-examined on all of his voluminous material as filed, but KPMG has never made even one request to do so.

In addition the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy has formally declined to examine Braich.A copy of the file, which creditors are entitled to according to the law, has not even been provided by KPMG, despite the numerous requests that have been made (Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act R.S.C. 1985, c. B-3). All appointments and/or changes to the Inspectors in this matter have been made in direct contravention of the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act.Currently an application has been brought on by KPMG Inc., to be discharged as Trustee despite never having even been affirmed by the general body of creditors, pursuant to the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act.

The hearing is scheduled for 10:00 am on July 15, 2009. KPMG's request to withdraw is a welcomed move by the creditors and Mr. Braich, as they have for years been requesting this very action as KPMG refused to properly convene a first a meeting of creditors and has not been acting in their best interests.In desperation KPMG has also asked the court to give them, and any others that are, or have been connected to the administration of the bankruptcy, throughout the past decade, immunity from any of the remedies available to Braich and his creditors.In this day and age, it is truly shocking that KPMG would make such a request, especially considering it is be done without a copy of the file being provided to the creditors, and no cross-examination has been allowed on any of the materials in the file (the file is over three feet thick).

This sounds like something that could only happen in Guantanamo Bay, not Vancouver, British Columbia.KiDDAA has learned that individual creditors have filed their own Motions requesting, among other things, permission to view the file, and to cross-examine Robert Rusko and others on their Affidavits. These Motions are also scheduled to be heard on July 15, 2009.

In one particular Motion, creditor Michael McCormack of Vancouver B.C., has asked that Chief Justice Donald Brenner (the judge that is seized of this file and is presiding on July 15, 2009), to recuse himself due to the fact that he is going to be receiving a subpoena from the United States and will be named as a defendant in lawsuits based in Canada and/or the U.S.

http://www.vancouversun.com/news/Supreme+Court+Chief+Justice+Donald+Brenner+resigns/1685949/story.htmlKiDDAA’s investigative team will bring you the news at it unfolds. We welcome your comments on this story.


  1. Freedom of Speech cannot be muzzled.

  2. How can this happen in Canada/


  3. Kiddaa Magazine Gets Legal Notice Over Erwin Braich
    Case Coverage

    By R. Paul Dhillon

    SURREY – The South Asian online magazine Kiddaa has been doing extensive reporting and behind rthe legal wheeling-dealing
    coverage of the ongoing tribulations of Indo-Canadian businessman Erwin Singh Braich’s case involving “forced bankruptcy.”
    Taking advantage of little coverage available of the case in the mainstream as well as South Asian media, Kiddaa Magazine has
    been bringing out juicy developments in the case for almost 9 months.

    There are two reasons for the little coverage due to a publication ban on the bankruptcy of Erwin Singh Braich and many believe
    the sordid details emerging about corporate and judicial heavyhandedness has kept the mainstream corporate media away
    because it’s something they rarely touch. The same was true of Mohan Kedia’s ongoing battle with the Royal Bank that never
    received any coverage or analysis in the mainstream media.

    According to Kiddaa head honcho Sunny Singh Chopra, the creditors of Braich have little idea what exactly happened and he
    feels it’s his job to expose the alleged incompetence of KPMG and the BC Courts.
    “They just wanted this fiasco resolved after ten years. A ten year bankruptcy, that is odd in itself, said Chopra.

    According to Kiddaa reporting, most of the creditors were well aware that there was no first meeting of creditors, Braich’s
    overseas assets were never audited, and too many alleged conflict of interests between various players, including Braich’s brothers
    Bobby Braich, Glen Walsh, Brian McLean and others.

    Chopra said Kiddaa has tried to maintain balanced coverage on the Erwin Singh Braich matter, despite criticism from some that
    Kiddaa is basically doing lobbying for Braich’s case.

    Chopra said it has been hard to get the facts from the various players involved and that the only individual who took the
    magazine’s calls was Howard Mickelson, the counsel for KPMG.

    “Now the same company, Gudmundseth Mickelson, counsel for KPMG, has threatened Kiddaa Magazine and our staff,” Chopra
    said. “Keep in mind, KPMG on July 15, 2010 was discharged as The South Asian Link News Paper : The oldest Indo Canadian Newspaper

    http://www.thelinkpaper.ca/index.php?subaction=showfull&id=1267305637&archive=&start_from=&ucat=1&[3/6/2010 10:42:20 AM]
    trustee in the Erwin Singh Braich bankruptcy. This was after ten years as trustee of Braich. In the last few months, both the
    presiding judge in the Braich matter, ex Chief Justice Charles Brenner and KPMG’s vice president, Robert Rusko resigned.”
    There have been rumours that this could be because of the Braich
    matter, but that has not been substantiated.
    Chopra, who calls himself a servant, a mere employee of Kiddaa,
    said his efforts are only geared towards bringing the public the
    whole truth regarding the Braich matter.
    According to Chopra, Kiddaa Magazine will retain counsel if
    needed because he feels his reporting is about freedom of speech,
    which is covered by the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
    “It matters to all Canadians about alleged corruption and white
    collar crime,” he said.
    You can check out Kiddaa magazine at www.kiddaa.com.
    27 Feb 2010 by editor
    All Rights Reserved by The South Asian Link.

  4. Questions that were never answered.....but will have to be when the RICO Litigation begins! You can't avoid the truth forever.....
    To David Woods and Stephen Boale,

    -Is Mr. Stephen Boale currently serving as President of The British Columbia Association of Insolvency & Restructuring Professionals?
    -Did Mr. Boale attend the meeting with Mr. Robert Rusko and others, including Mr. Erwin Singh Braich, held at the KPMG offices (777 Dunsmuir, Vancouver, B.C.) in January, 2000? Was this meeting approximately four and one-half hours long and tape recorded with each attendees consent?

    -Did Mr. Braich receive a hand-written list from Mr. Boale indicating certain procedures which were consented to and agreed to by KPMG in their capacity as "Trustee" at the end of the aforementioned meeting?

    -Why did KPMG (Robert Rusko and Stephen Boale) admit that the alleged first meeting of creditors (held in November, 1999) was not properly convened pursuant to the Bankruptcy & Insolvency Act?

    -With respect to this meeting; was it somewhat strange that Mr. Darren Bidulka, from KPMG, did not attend any portion of same?
    -What exactly was Mr. Bidulka's official relationship/title on the Braich file at that time? Was he not the manager assigned to this file?

    -What type of work/investigation/research was undertaken by KPMG during the hasty preparation of the qualified Statement of Affairs for the alleged bankrupt (Mr. Erwin Braich) in the six week period between October 1, 1999 (the date of Honourable Justice Lowry's pronouncement of the appointment of KPMG/Robert Rusko as the Receiver in the granting of the Petition) and the alleged first meeting of creditors?

    -Do either Mr. Boale or Mr. Wood recall from any meetings, notes, memos, or other means - the fact that Mr. Robert Rusko and Mr. Stephen Boale were told by Mr. Braich in the long meeting many details of a great number of assets around the globe which were owned/controlled by him? Did not Mr. Rusko acknowledge this information and, in fact, state that KPMG had vast knowledge of Braich's assets/affairs in Eastern European countries and elsewhere due to the presence of KPMG personnel and staff in those very regions?

    -Do either Mr. Wood or Mr. Boale recall any occasion throughout the last decade when Mr. Braich and/or certain lawful creditors complained about any existing or perceived conflict-of-interest relating to Mr. J. Buttalia and Mr. B. McLean in this matter/file?

    -Do either of you remember any of the events leading up to the improper and illegal raid and detention of personal property and other property from Mr. Braich's Travel House Inn motel
    room in Bellingham, Washington?

    -Do either of you recall anything relating to documents signed by either of you relating to the acquisition or requests for same relating to the voluminous material obtained from the room? Do you remember any suggestions by anyone of dissemination of any sensitive business documents?

    -Do you recall any discussion with any person whatsoever with respect to the loss or possible theft of various tape recordings or other receipts, documents, maps, etc. which were stored in the room in Bellingham?

  5. -What comments could you fairly make relative to the lengthy and detailed Complaint filed by Mr. Erwin Braich in the Seattle, Washington courthouse on February 2, 2007, which Complaint alleges many civil and constitutional violations and damage arising from activities surrounding the raid and subsequent events and actions?

    -Do either of you recall any knowledge of Mr. Brian McLean speaking to the manager of the Travel House Inn weeks prior to the subject raid and detention of personal and other property?

    -Do either of you have any comment about the failure of KPMG to abide by any of the Orders pronounced by the Supreme Court of British Columbia, from time to time?

    -For instance - Master Patterson's Order made in 2000 determining that there ought to be a proper first meeting of creditors pursuant to The Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act?

    -As another example - The Order made by the Honourable Justice Loo, in 2001, relating to the delivery to interested parties of the shares/control and custody of the numbered company involved in the potential litigation surrounding the well known Sandy Hill real estate development project in Abbotsford, B.C.?

    -Would either of you remember or want to state for the record why there was not one single question, which arose for several years, from the office of KPMG, Vancouver, B.C., relative to the Statement of Affairs filed by Mr. Braich on June 30, 2004? Do either of you think, suspect, or know for certain that Mr. Braich's Washington and American Complaint filed in February, 2007, triggered sudden interest in this file?

    -Would either or both of you swear under oath as to the accuracy of all facts as set out in each and every Affidavit as filed by Mr. Robert Rusko, from time to time, in the legal proceedings in B.C. Supreme Court?

    -Do both or either of you (Mr. Boale and/or Mr. Wood) disagree with the findings of fact by the Honourable Madam Justice Morrison as they relate to conflict-of-interest, in this bankruptcy matter, on the part of members of the McLean, Saba, and Armstrong law firm?

    -What are your views now of the laying of seven criminal charges which then gave rise to the duplicitous Warrants for arrest of Mr. Braich? Was this not considered somewhat egregious or malicious from your vast experience in these types of matters?

    -What are your respective views of the investigation procedure and technique utilized by then Constable Tim Alder in this sordid mess, of course, with the benefit of hindsight?

    -Were either of you aware that Mr. Bill Bil from the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy had a previous association and friendship with Constable Tim Alder?

    -Do either of you recall any particular comments, statements, or complaints, which were a common theme as imparted to either of you or others by Mr. Braich's lawful creditors?

    -Would you - Mr. David S. Wood - still today, approve in writing, once again, the Proof of Claim as submitted by Mr. Glenn Walsh/Tercon Contractors? Were you not phased whatsoever or professionally concerned that Mr. Alan
    Brown (then a partner in a Vancouver law firm), an insolvency and bankruptcy specialist, would not approve of the subject Proof of Claim, when requested by Mr. Brian McLean to do same? This was during the brief period of time when Mr. Brian McLean was replaced by Mr. Alan Brown as counsel representing KPMG for an argument of a Motion before Madam Justice Koenigsberg. You may remember that quite oddly Mr. McLean opted to represent again, Mr. Walsh/Tercon Contractors, the co-Petitioner, for this one issue and KPMG had to find a suitable replacement.

  6. -Will you confirm that your present firm is involved in the Insolvency and/or Bankruptcy matter relating to another Tercon affiliate and/or associated corporation?

    -What are your views relating to the seminars and/or meetings which are held by the provincial or Canadian Association of Insolvency & Restructuring Professionals wherein members of the judiciary are invited to moderate, lecture, or speak about relevant issues?

    -Do you think that this type of social contact between Trustees in Bankruptcy, lawyers, and almighty judges might possibly compromise objectivity and lead to biased decisions by presiding judges in subsequent appearances before them by "known" practitioners? Is this not unfair to lay litigants - as they do not have a chance to befriend various judges at these functions and/or forums?

    -Why did KPMG not want to hold the first meeting of creditors pursuant to the BIA? Why did KPMG not resign several years earlier?

    -Do you have any idea why KPMG would retain non-specialists in Insolvency & Bankruptcy law twice in a row? First Mr.Brian McLean and next Mr. Howard Mickelson. Does this make sense to either of you?

    -What are your thoughts about the fact that not one creditor other than the one co-Petitioner supplied funds to KPMG throughout this saga?

    This is only a small sampling of questions. More comprehensive concerns and other specific issues in this alleged bankruptcy matter will follow when these initial handful of queries are answered.


  7. Part one of two

    How did KPMG let Brian McLean get them into this mess! - The RICO litigation will force the answers out of these guys....they may own B.C. but the United States is a whole different story.

    Questions posed to to Brian McLean, that he has refused to answer in writing are below. He has also refused to be interviewed on camera and has avoided one U.S. subpoena already.

    Where is KPMG and the rest of their team going to run when the real pressure comes to bear?

    Recently the new Chief Justice Robert Bauman gave a pretty transparent ruling that covered for his predecessor! Team Braich got a gift when Mr. Bauman threw his hat in the ring....the U.S. attorneys are going to have a field day with the Canadians!!!

    Please answer these questions and email them back to KiDDAAMAG@gmail.com within 10 days to be included in the next print issue of KiDDAA Magazine. www.KiDDAA.com

    -Was it necessary for the Supreme Court of B.C. to direct you (Mr. McLean) - that your firm should sign an undertaking about your law firms's conflict of interest - before you finally realized that there may be a conflict of interest - in the matter of the alleged bankruptcy of Erwin Braich?

    -Your firm wrote a letter to Mr. Braich's lawyer - Mr. MacKenzie - confirming that your client (either Tercon Contractors Ltd. or Mr. Glen Walsh) converted their/his debt to equity? Do you recall signing that letter? May we have your comments on this letter?

    -In 1999 Mr. McLean agreed to several adjournments with Mr. Braich's lawyer (Mr. Gordon Elliott), throughout the summer, from June until October 1, 1999 - for the Hearing of the Petition - WHAT were the EXACT purposes for these many adjournments?

    -Prior to these adjournments being granted; did all or, in fact, ANY ONE of Mr. Braich's lawful creditors have any say in this happening pursuant to the law (Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act)?

    -Before finding co-Petitioner (Mr. Bobby Braich); how many people did you shop around for and with while trying to find a legitimate and proper creditor of Mr. Erwin Braich in order to co-Petition him?

    -Do you recall any meetings in your offices in Park Royal, with Mr. Jay Grewal, relating to your client being offered equity in any land development deals from any Braich related company? Not even Sandy Hill in Abbotsford?

  8. Part two of two

    -Did you ever telephone The Travel House Inn in Bellingham seeking to gain permission to access the documents and files etc. situated in Mr. Erwin Braich's hotel room prior to the raid? Do you remember speaking to Mr. Warren Cha (the hotel manager) about this when he returned your telephone call?

    -Were you alone, or with certain KPMG personnel, when you contacted Washington State government officials and other State or U.S. Federal officials about precisely how to go about seizing Mr. Braich's private property?

    -Do you recall any single piece of advice or any single opinion that you gave to your client KPMG in their role as Trustee in Bankruptcy in this matter throughout about ten years?

    -How long did Mr. Steve Postman work for your law firm before he went to work for the government? Do you think or know if he had any input in the seven criminal charges which were brought against Mr. Braich? Did you speak to him or anyone in his department about these silly charges which hung over Mr. Braich's head for six years?

    -What were your thoughts when each and every one of these 7 charges were stayed by the Crown in 2007? Did you feel disappointed?

    -How deeply involved was your firm in the applications to various Courts pronouncing Warrants for the arrest of Mr. Erwin Braich? Did your law firm ever become involved in an attempt to extradite Mr. Braich from any foreign jurisdiction where he was conducting any of his business activities?

    -Did you ever speak with Mr. Erwin Braich? If so; what was discussed? If not; did you or anyone in your law firm ever try to contact him?

    -Do you believe that Master Patterson of the B.C. Supreme Court made a mistake when he Ordered that KPMG hold a first meeting of creditors pursuant to the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act? Why was this meeting never held in eight or so years?

    -How often did you speak or meet with Mr. David Wood? Mr. Stephen Boale? Mr. Robert Rusko? (all from the firm - your client - KPMG)

    -Who gave you specific instructions to send various material to lawyers in Alberta which related to Mr. Braich and the dubious bankruptcy matter? Or did you do this alone without any instructions from your client - KPMG?

    -Why did your law firm write to lawyers in the Caribbean to try and thwart their motivation to pay in full (with interest) all lawful creditors of Mr. Braich? This seems to be against the interests of all the general body of creditors? Do you see that now in hindsight?