|LontohCoal to File Class Action Lawsuit against Naspers Limited in New York
2012-05-15 Hong Kong, May 15, 2012 - ( ACN Newswire ) - LontohCoal Limited ("LontohCoal" or "Company"), one of the fastest growing mining companies in Southern Africa, is preparing to file a civil lawsuit against media empire, Naspers Limited ("Naspers"). Naspers is a multinational broad-based media company, incorporated in 1915 as a public limited liability company and listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange in September 1994. The company also has an ADR listing on the London Stock Exchange.
The quantum value of the damages suffered is still being determined. The law suit is to be instituted in the state of New York, United States of America, for a series of false, defamatory and malicious articles published in various media platforms of Naspers between January and April 2012.
LontohCoal - a South African domiciled company incorporated in 2008 with commercial and operational interests globally - is a public company which has an international footprint and is therefore a global citizen, like Naspers.
This civil action seeks a relief for an unprecedented reputational damage and financial losses suffered by the Company stemming from the three published articles. The articles were published in January, February and April 2012.
-- The first article under the title "The ANC bigwigs and business guru duped", was first published on the 29th January 2012.
-- The second article headed "Lontoh Coal blows investors' millions - Money used to pay for flights, hotels, interior designs", was first published on the 19th February 2012.
-- The latest article with a heading "LontohCoal Reneges On Coal Pact" first appeared on the 29th April 2012.
It is the averment of the Company that as a direct result of these published articles that contain information which is false in content and context, and therefore defamatory, misleading and prejudicial to the Company and its officers, led to the incurrence of significant reputational damage and financial losses, the quantum value of which is determinable.
It is LontohCoal's view that besides the contents which are false and malicious, the article headings amounted to "an intentional or negligent departure from the facts whether by distortion, exaggeration or misrepresentation, material omissions or summarisation"; as quoted from the South African Press Code.
It needs to be emphasised that despite the openness with which LontohCoal management handled enquiries from Naspers media organisations, the organisations in question failed to report fairly, objectively and truthfully.
It needs to be stated further that the severity of the reputational harm to the Company and its officers is not only confined to South Africa, but extends globally. LontohCoal board of directors is a diverse organ of the Company representing persons from across the world. Because of the international prominence of the Company, this litigation action will be pursued in order to achieve the maximum impact. To this end, LontohCoal has briefed its South African legal counsel to appoint a reputable international law firm to handle the lawsuit which will be instituted in the State of New York, United States of America.
The decision to file the lawsuit against Naspers in New York is in the view of the board of directors of LontohCoal, a significant step towards restoring the reputational standing of the Company, given its international profile.
Mr. Tshepo Kgadima
Mobile: +27 82 965 7131
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