$50m Suit Hits Prime Names
Following the lodgement in the Supreme Court of Victoria of the Listing Fee Claim on 5 March 2012, we invite unitholders to read the attached article by Mr Nick Lenaghan in today's Australian Financial Review.
As reported in the article, eight former directors of the Trust's Responsible Entity have been included as defendants. We note that the directors at the time of payment of the listing fee proceeds were Dr Michael Wooldridge, Mr Peter Clarke, Mr William Lewski, Mr Mark Butler, Mr Kim Jaques, Mr Philip Powell, Mr Anthony Hancy and Mr Neil Rodaway.
We welcome the inclusion of corporate entities associated with Mr William Lewski as defendants, including those entities which allegedly received the proceeds of the listing fee.
We welcome the inclusion of the Trust's advisers as defendants, namely Kidder Williams (corporate advisers) and Madgwicks (legal advisers).
We expect the quantum of the Listing Fee Claim to be approximately $50 million, comprising the Listing Fee of $33 million, all costs associated with the Listing Fee that were charged to the Trust, and interest at commercial rates on both of these amounts. In addition, we also expect the Listing Fee Claim to seek the reimbursement of all legal costs incurred in pursuing this matter.
We expect the Listing Fee Claim to be subject to a Directions Hearing in the Supreme Court later this month which is likely to set out the timetable for determining this matter.
As unitholders will recall, the Listing Fee Claim is just the first of many legal actions that the Prime Trust Action Group believes are capable of being pursued against various parties. We also welcome the statement by Lawler Draper Dillon that it is preparing for further legal action.