Timber project promoter banned

Timber project promoter banned

WESTERN Australian businessman Joseph Karra has been banned from acting as a representative for a securities dealer for three years.

The ban comes as a result of Mr Karra’s involvement with Exotic Timber of Australia Ltd.

Mr Karra was a director and an authorised representative of Exotic Timbers, which is a licensed security dealer involved in two Northern Territory-based agricultural managed investment schemes.

The schemes were for the production of sandalwood, neem, white cedar and mahogany trees at Batchelor, 100 kilometres south of Darwin.

More than 800 woodlots were sold through the schemes with more than $6 million invested.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission found that Mr Karra had not performed his duties as a representative of a securities dealer efficiently and fairly from 1998 to 2002 and, as a result of his conduct, may not do so in the future.

Exotic Timbers was wound up by the Federal Court in June 2003 following action by ASIC.

During the proceedings, the court made extensive declarations about Exotic Timber’s conduct in operating the schemes, in particular, its failure to lodge a disclosure statement with ASIC as well as the company’s management of late applications and its failure to lodge financial and directors’ reports.

Brokers sought for Flinders Diamond shares

THE Australian Securities and Investments Commission has called for expressions of interest from brokers to sell about 17.54 per cent of Flinders Diamonds Limited.

That stake has been vested in ASIC since June 12 2003 due to a Supreme Court of South Australia judgement.

The broker will be required to sell the shares within six months from February 20 for the best price reasonably attainable.

Expressions of interest from interested brokers should provide:

p The full name of the broker, the type of licence held and the licence number;

p Details of the broker’s relevant experience in relation to the sale of similar sized or larger parcels of shares and trading in Flinders Diamonds shares in the past 12 months;

p A description of how the broker would propose to sell the shares;

p An indication as to whether the broker considers it would have any conflict of interest in selling the shares. In particular, it should disclose if it has at any time traded any shares or had any business relationship with Tiger International Resources, Patric Barry, Anthony Campbell and Campbell Corporation or any associate of any of those persons and entities;

p The fees to be charged for selling the shares; and

p Any information the broker considers would support its expression of interest.

Expressions of interest should be addressed to Casandra Francas, ASIC Corporate Finance and emailed to or faxed to (08) 8202 8540.

Flinders, a South Australian-based Australian Stock Exchange listed company, was embroiled in a court battle between Tiger International Resources, Patric Barry, Campbell Corporation and Balance Tax.

Those people and entities sought a general meeting to replace Flinder’s three directors, chairman Robert Kennedy and lawyer Ewan Vickery with three Perth Directors Adrian Lungan, John Campbell and Lindsay Hay.

The SA Supreme Court found in favour of Flinders and vested the shares held by the plaintiffs with ASIC. The escrow period for those shares expires this month.

Flinders has two farm-in agreements in WA with Prenti Exploration and Pilbara Cratons.

Proposed CLERP 9 timetable

BASED on the current timetable for the introduction of the Corporate Law Economic Reform Program (Audit Reform and Corporate Disclosure) Bill, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission has announced plans to release a number of policy proposals and final policy statements.

The bill, known as the CLERP 9 Bill is due to be introduced on July 1, providing it proceeds through Federal Parliament in time.

ASIC intends to release its statements on:

p Auditor registration;

p When ASIC might use its powers to adapt requirements in the CLERP 9 Bill that relate to disclosure;

p When ASIC might use its powers to adapt requirements in the CLERP 9 Bill that relate to audit and financial reporting;

p What insurance requirements should apply for companies that provide audit services. A final policy statement on this topic will be issued after July 1;

p Conflicts of interests. A final policy is due to be issued before July 1 even though the obligation does not commence until January 5; and

p A guide on ASIC’s processes regarding the proposed power to issue infringement notices for breaches of the continuous disclosure regime.

Further details are set out in ASIC’s implementation plan that is at




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