He doesn't understand the pressure that comes with not being paid," he said. It was explained to us that bad guys with semi-automatics might come in a helicopter and steal the diamonds.
Letters to the corporate regulator ASIC and the Takeovers Panel show three former senior Merlin employees claim they not did receive any pay or superannuation from the company for 16 months when the mine stopped operating in and None was offered a redundancy. The loans from the public company to the private company were never repaid, after being written of as "impairments".
They have asked why the loans were unsecured and on no-interest terms. Merlin Diamonds in December challenged the ASX to lift its suspension, writing that it had received advice from senior counsel that it was acting in compliance with the listing rules. The company also taunted the ASX on its continued scrutiny of the company and ban on the trading of its shares.
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He said the Merlin site was a world-class deposit and diamond discoveries in the past year pointed to an encouraging future. Mr Gutnick wanted investors to remember he had discovered some of the best gold deposits in Australia in recent decades. The Sydney Morning Herald.
The Sydney Morning Herald
Listed on the ASX but suspended from trading for the past year, Merlin Diamonds has been under investigation by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission ASIC over suspected illegal conduct surrounding millions of dollars of investor money leaving the company's accounts without shareholder approval.
ASIC investigators alleged the "loans" had been used to fund private companies associated with Mr Gutnick which provided "no discernible benefit to Merlin Diamonds".
The court's decision on Friday is the latest setback for Mr Gutnick, one of Australia's best-known business figures, nicknamed "Diamond Joe" due to his appetite for outback diamond and gold deposits. He resumed chairmanship of Merlin Diamonds after emerging from the bankruptcy last year.
Federal Court Judge Michael O'Bryan on Friday said he was satisfied there was sufficient reason to intervene in Merlin Diamonds, due to the "nature and extent of the potential contraventions". Justice O'Bryan determined an examination of Merlin's accounts "by someone independent of the company" was required, appointing Deloitte as provisional liquidator to preserve Merlin's assets until a final hearing on ASIC's application to wind the company up.
Judge orders liquidators to 'Diamond Joe' Gutnick's mining company.