09/04/2021 - 15:31

Brierty liquidators sue over 'insolvent payments'

09/04/2021 - 15:31

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The liquidators of Brierty have launched Supreme Court action to recover millions of dollars from 12 companies they claim received payments while the civil and mining contractor was insolvent.

Brierty liquidators sue over 'insolvent payments'
Liquidator Matthew Woods.

The liquidators of Brierty have launched Supreme Court action to recover millions of dollars from 12 companies they claim received payments while the civil and mining contractor was insolvent.

Brierty Limited collapsed in 2017 with debts of almost $66 million, prompting investigations from liquidators Matthew Woods, Hayden White and Clint Joseph, from KPMG, into potential recovery actions.

The Supreme Court action was lodged last month, seeking the return of money that was paid to suppliers during the time in which the liquidators believe the company was insolvent.

The named defendants were B&J Catalano, Tenite, Boral Construction Materials Group, Brooks Hire Service, Colas Western Australia, Fennell Tyres International, Fulton Hogan Industries, Jakk Contracting, Kais Contractors, Kee Hire, Leda Security Products and Transit Plant (trading as Zenith Low Loaders).

In a judgment published this week, Acting Master Larissa Strk said the size of the claim against each of the 12 defendants ranged from $133,000 to $1.25 million. She ordered 12 separate mediations take place with the liquidators, one for each of the defendants.

Brierty's board called in the administrators in September 2017 after failing to recover from the effects of a financial failure on a road project.

A report to creditors in 2018 indicated the liquidators believed Brierty was trading insolvent from the middle of 2017, but the company's directors disputed that claim and vowed to defend any action taken against them as a consequence.

The liquidators had earlier indicated in a report to creditors that bonuses of more than $200,000 paid to top executives might be recoverable.

Former employees of Brierty received a 42c-in-the-dollar dividend in 2019.

 

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