Court to hand down K2.7b claim by Yama against BSP | #ukscams | #datingscams | #european


By TODAGIA KELOLA

The National court is expected to hand down a decision on whether the Bank of South Pacific (BSP) Limited is liable to pay a massive K2.7 billion to businessman and former Madang Governor Peter Yama and his group of companies.

The proceeding was filed in 2015, and a trial was conducted and concluded in October 2017.

Last Friday, after almost five years, the matter returned for mention, in which the presiding judge Justice Ere Kariko ordered that a judgement will be handed down on August 3, 2023.

He also ordered that for the purpose of the delivery of the judgement, overseas counsels who attended the trial, Manuel Varitmos and Ian Molloy, be permitted to appear by video link on that date.

Yama and his group of companies; Yama Security Services, Smugglers Inn Resort, Niesenel No 77, Madang Taxi Hire, Siar Coffee Mill, Ace Guards, Simoi Shipping and Yaul Plantation, are seeking damages from the bank on allegations that the bank had committed a number of illegal actions, including: the creation of fixed and floating charges that were fraudulently imposedon his companies in 2000 without his knowledge.

The back ground of the court battle between Yama and the Bank of South Pacific, was that the Yama Group of Companies had outstanding loans which were yet to be settled with the then Papua New Guinea Banking Corporation in 1999.

In 2002, PNGBC was bought off by Bank of South Pacific with all its assets and liabilities transferred to BSP, including the outstanding loans of the Yama Group of Companies.

This led to a number of court battles between Yama and BSP over two decades.

During those proceedings, Mr Yama had contended in the various challenges that BSP was involved in corporate fraud against his companies, the Yama Group of Companies.

He had put to the court that the bank had committed a number of illegal actions, including fixed and floating charges, allegedly imposed fraudulently on his companies without their knowledge in 2000.

In 2014, a three-men Supreme Court bench comprising the Chief Justice Sir Gibbs Salika, who was the then Deputy Chief Justice, and senior judges Justice’s Ellenas Batari and the late Justice Salatiel Lenalia, ruled in favour of the Yama Group of Companies, in that the Yama Group had suffered loss of business as a result of the reliance on invalid fixed floating charges imposed by the bank.

In their decision at that time, they cited two related National Court proceedings, N4407 Yama Security Limited vs Adrian Warupi and Motor Vehicle Insurance Trust Limited and Bank South Pacific Limited, in which the court found that fixed floating charges relied on by the bank were invalid and could not be relied on and another a criminal proceeding N5350 the State vs Garth McIlwain, which also ruled that the fixed floating charges were the same that were dealt by the civil proceedings.

The three-men bench had stated that: “It follows then that the issues no longer exist.

The proceedings from the beginning have been a nullity. All previous proceedings taken out by the appellants (BSP) related to the fixed floating charges have all along been a nullity.

As a result of the long-drawn-out proceedings, parties have been affected adversely.

The Smugglers Inn for example and the Yama Group of Companies have suffered business as a result of the reliance on the invalid floating charges by the appellants.”

The bench went on further and said the two applicants have not appealed against the findings of the two National Court decisions so their respective findings remain.

The challenge and claim by Mr Yama, if granted, will be the biggest court ordered judgement apart from the Pako FC and Cloudy Bay, which is K117 million.



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