More than 230 investors - with $60 million in claims on a
former Allan Hubbard company - have lodged a formal complaint
with the Minister of Commerce and Attorney-general over the
actions of statutory managers, Grant Thornton.
At issue is $60 million in assets being disputed by Mr
Hubbard's widow Jean, which should have gone to court last
week, but the hearing was rescheduled to May 20 next year as
Grant Thornton had unearthed a large number of documents.
Following the rescheduling, the Investor Liaison Group
yesterday released a statement, saying it had formally
complained to Minister of Commerce, Craig Foss, and the
Attorney-general Lyn Provost about the work done by statutory
manager Grant Thornton, which was appointed in June 2010.
The liaison group claims "ongoing delays" in the return of
funds to Hubbard Management Fund and Aorangi Securities
investors, alleging "the excessive statutory management costs
are no longer acceptable"; at present above $12 million.
"The complaint has been initiated after the latest blunder by
the statutory managers in discovering previously forgotten
boxes of documents that are pertinent to a judicial hearing
to decide distribution of Aorangi's assets," the statement
Noel Macpherson of South Canterbury was an investor in both
Aorangi Securities and Hubbard Managed Funds, and is now one
of six investors representing interests of more than 230
former investors; the Investor Liaison Group.
Mr Macpherson released the statement yesterday, then when
contacted said if Grant Thornton did not manage to secure
access to the $60 million, then potentially there could be
more litigation against Mrs Hubbard, Mr Hubbard's estate and
maybe other company directors.
Because of the regulatory action, the investors reserved
their right to seek recourse and compensation, arising from
emotional and financial suffering, inflicted because of the
"unwarranted actions of the public authorities" and "believe
the Government is responsible for paying the costs", the
Grant Thornton have said Mrs Hubbard's claim was that $60
million of the $96 million of Aorangi assets were never
transferred to Aorangi's ownership and are therefore her's
personally and for her late husband's estate, The New Zealand
Herald has reported.
So far, investors have received $14.5 million, or 15c in the
dollar, but if the $60 million Aorangi assets were released
to them it would be close to full payment, Grant Thornton
estimated in June.
The statement yesterday said the further seven-month delay
had "a serious detrimental impact upon investors who have
been struggling emotionally and financially since their funds
were frozen on June 20, 2010", noting at least 22 had died