Alliance suing former chief

DAVID HELLIER

Alliance Resources, the oil and gas company whose shares have been suspended on the London stock market at 4.5p since early last month, yesterday issued legal proceeedings against its former chief executive, the Cork businessman John O'Brien.

The company, which is now being run by a three-man management committee, says it is suing its former head for damages for alleged fraudulent misrepresentations, fraud and/or deceit, breach of his service agreement, breach of fiduciary duty as well as for reimbursements of certain sums received as a result of false declarations.

Mr O'Brien, who said yesterday he had "nothing to hide", is defending the writ and is opposing a Mareva injunction that was obtained by the company last month freezing his financial assets. The company's action relates to statements made in documents that accompanied a pounds 7.2m money- raising exercise earlier this year.

Yesterday the company said the value of the Valentine Sugar Plantation, located 30 miles south of New Orleans, was less than had been described in the prospectus. The company took issue mainly with the prospects of a particular well, Well 14.

"As a result of investigations made by the company, it is now apparent that the true position in respect of this well has been concealed and misrepresented to the company by its former chief executive," a state- ment said yesterday.

The company said that contrary to indications given in the prospectus, it was now the company's understanding that the well, which was said to house a large gas discovery, was in fact never capable of commercial production and was finally plugged and abandoned in August this year.

As part of the lease there was a provision that in order to maintain its interest in the undeveloped field Alliance had an obligation to drill a well every 110 days. It is the company's contention that at the time of the money-raising, the company had not complied with this provision, but that Mr O'Brien had nonetheless indicated the company had been granted an extension on certain conditions.

The Serious Fraud Office was called in by the company last month and is still said to be involved in conducting its own inquiries into Mr O'Brien.

Mr O'Brien said he had not been approached by the fraud office. "But I would be delighted to meet with them at any time."

Alliance says the company is still viable and that its shares will be able to be traded again when full-year financial figures are released later this month.

Mr O'Brien said yesterday the company's decision to proceed with the drilling of the Valentine well (Valentine 14) was based upon a substantial number of independent reports, which included a process of continuing evaluation.

"The decision to plug and abandon Valentine 14 was not my decision and appears to contradict the technical reports," he said.

PROMOTED VIDEO
News
ebooksAn evocation of the conflict through the eyes of those who lived through it
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

AIFMD Business Analyst / Consultant - Investment Management

£450 - £600 per day: Harrington Starr: AIFMD Business Analyst / Consultant - I...

Business Analyst Solvency II SME (Pillar 1, 2 & 3) Insurance

£450 - £600 per day: Harrington Starr: Business Analyst Solvency II SME (Pilla...

Manager - SAS - Data Warehouse - Banking

£350 - £365 per day: Orgtel: Manager, SAS, Data Warehouse, Banking, Bristol - ...

SQL DBA/Developer

£500 per day: Harrington Starr: SQL DBA/Developer
 SQL, C#, VBA, Linux, SQL Se...

Day In a Page

Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home
Lauded therapist Harley Mille still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Lauded therapist still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Australian Harley Miller is as frustrated by court delays as she is with the idiosyncrasies of immigration law
Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world. But could his predictions of war do the same?

Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world...

But could his predictions of war do the same?
Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs: 'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs
Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities, but why?

Young at hort

Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities. But why are so many people are swapping sweaty clubs for leafy shrubs?
Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award: 'making a quip as funny as possible is an art'

Beyond a joke

Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award, has nigh-on 200 in his act. So how are they conceived?
The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

Sadly though, the Lawrence of Arabia star is not around to lend his own critique
Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire: The joy of camping in a wetland nature reserve and sleeping under the stars

A wild night out

Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire offers a rare chance to camp in a wetland nature reserve
Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition: It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans

Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition

It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans
Besiktas vs Arsenal: Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie

Besiktas vs Arsenal

Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie
Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

As the Northern Irishman prepares for the Barclays, he finds time to appear on TV in the States, where he’s now such a global superstar that he needs no introduction
Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to Formula One

Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to F1

The 16-year-old will become the sport’s youngest-ever driver when he makes his debut for Toro Rosso next season
Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

But belated attempts to unite will be to no avail if the Sunni caliphate remains strong in Syria, says Patrick Cockburn
Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I would end up killing myself in jail'

Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I'd end up killing myself in jail'

Following last week's report on prison suicides, the former inmate asks how much progress we have made in the 50 years since the abolition of capital punishment