Incubator executive sued for fraud has passed away

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Dr. Mark Bernier: Death – Obituary – Cause of Death: Dr. Mark Bernier, 55, has passed away. He died unexpectedly on August 14, 2021 after a valiant battle with cancer.

The founder of San Diego’s recently defunct start-up incubator ThinkTank Innovation, was reported to have died days before a civil hearing involving Bernier and a few of his ventures.

Dr. Bernier had earlier denied the allegations in a statement to the Union-Tribune in July, but said he was forced to close ThinkTank because of the mounting legal costs tied to the suit. A hearing was scheduled for Wednesday, but on Aug. 22 Bernier’s attorneys filed legal documents requesting to “withdraw as counsel” for Bernier, citing that the firm had “recently learned that Mr. Bernier has passed away.”

The civil lawsuit against Bernier, filed in April, alleged that he participated in securities fraud and operated as an unlicensed broker and investment adviser, among several other complaints.

Bernier’s legal counsel, Logan Smith of McNamara Smith LLP, declined to comment, citing respect for the plaintiff’s family.