Supreme Court rebuffs Crafar appeal bid
Wed, 17 Oct 2012 2:24p.m.
The Supreme Court has rejected a second attempt by two Maori trusts to overturn the sale of the Crafar Farms to Chinese buyer Shanghai Pengxin.
The Tiroa E and Te Hape B Trusts were part of a bidding group led by millionaire Sir Michael Fay that was the under-bidder for the North Island farms being sold by receivers.
The sale has been approved by the Overseas Investment Office and the Court of Appeal has already rejected an appeal by Sir Michael and the trusts to buy the 16 properties.
In the Supreme Court ruling on Wednesday, Justices John McGrath, William Young and Susan Glazebrook dismissed the application to appeal and ordered costs of $2,500 be paid to Milk New Zealand Holdings, the Pengxin vehicle, and the crown respondents.
The second appeal had turned on whether the ministers involved were able to conclude the buyers had relevant business experience when giving consent to the sale.
The appeal covered both the Chinese buyers and whether their experience could include Landcorp, the state-owned farmer that would manage the farms.
The judges "see no obvious error in the careful and common factual assessments made by the High Court and Court of Appeal," the judgment says.
"Overall, we do not see that it is necessary in the interests of justice for the court to give leave to the applicants for a further appeal."
The Court of Appeal has concluded that Pengxin's Jiang Zhaobai's ability to bring himself from humble beginnings to become "a person of some stature in the Chinese commercial world," would satisfy the minister making the decision in approving the sale of the Crafar family farms.
That court wasn't swayed by the argument that Land Information Minister Maurice Williamson hadn't delved deeply enough into the success of Pengxin's agribusiness investments.
The farms were tipped into receivership in 2009, and owed bankers some $274 million as at April, according to the receivers' reports.
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17/10/2012 8:01:31 p.m.
Jim Seaview wrote:
QUOTE: “The Supreme Court has rejected a second attempt by two Maori trusts to overturn the sale of the Crafar Farms to Chinese buyer Shanghai Pengxin. The Tiroa E and Te Hape B Trusts were part of a bidding group led by millionaire Sir Michael Fay that was the under-bidder for the North Island farms being sold by receivers.
EARLIER this year Sir Michael Fay led the “CRAFAR FARMS PURCHASE GROUP” and offered the Receivers $171.5 million for the Crafar farms while at the same time the Pengxin's Jiang Zhaobai's offered $210 million to the Receiver and consequently became the buyer. Simple as that.
TODAY we hear that the Supreme Court has rejected The TIROA E and TE HAPE B TRUSTS who were part of a bidding group led by millionaire Sir Michael Fay.
MR FAY who has the ability to change the two groups disguise when it suits him has been EXPOSED and hopefully the sale of the Crafar Farms will be put to rest, and let the Chinese get on with it.
17/10/2012 2:58:14 p.m.
About time, for gods sake sell the bloody thing so PGG Wrightson can get there 10 million back.
17/10/2012 2:48:26 p.m.
Sorry New Zealanders - the government has sold you out for a "free" trade deal with China.
Another example of short sighted government departments/ministries.
Our forefathers that fought and died for our way of life must be rolling over in their graves.
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