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Amaya CEO's Friend Being Investigated in Financial Probe

Quebec's financial regulator Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) is reportedly interested in a financial advisor and personal friend of Amaya CEO David Baazov in a probe over the betting giant's acquisition of the Rational Group.

Yoel Altman is reportedly a person of interest in the probe, as his established history with Baazov is documented by both a personal and business relationship. He reportedly floated a $5 million loan to Amaya in 2012 to help the firm complete an acquisition of Cryptologic.

Amaya Gaming is being investigated by AMF for unusual trading before the announcement of the Rational acquisition, which caused Amaya's stock price to double in the months prior to the official notification.

A report by the Toronto Globe and Mail Newspaper on the investigation of Mr. Altman noted: "Mr. Altman is also one of more than 300 investors identified on a confidential list by Wall Street’s self-regulator, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), for unusually active trading in Amaya’s stock ahead of the company’s news last June that it was buying online poker giant PokerStars."

Other parties are also reportedly under investigation in the deal, as up to 300 people are being looked at, including prominent investor John Fielding is being looked at for his $2 million investment in Rational just before the takeover. Fielding denies having any inside information on the deal.