In January 2020, a number of documents and information about Lydian International became accessible to the public. The reason why this was possible is that in December 2019 Lydian applied for and was granted protection under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA) which provided that no proceedings may be commenced or continued against or in respect of Lydian International and its subsidiaries (now extended till March 2, 2020). This basically means that during this period, Lydian’s creditors are not able to take the assets of the company in return to its unpaid loans.
The court protection period also give Lydian time for selling the Amulsar gold project or for raising money to sue Armenia in the corporate arbitration tribunals. Alvarez & Marsal Canada Inc. was appointed monitor of the Lydian in the CCAA proceedings, and so a large number of documents became available on their website, including the Motion Report and affidavit of Lydian’s chief executive.
Armenian Environmental Front read those documents and found out that particularly the affidavit is full of false factual information and distorted or manipulative presentation of facts, which we would like to present to the public part by part. This first part concerns the Police and the Government of Armenia.
Edward Sellers, the Interim President and Chief Executive Officer of Lydian International Limited writes in his affidavit to the Ontario Superior Court of Justice:
“Police forces in Armenia have not acted on orders made by Armenian courts requiring the removal of blockaders and the commencement of criminal proceedings against them, and the GOA [Government of Armenia] has failed to cause the police to enforce court orders, further extending the illegal blockades.” (Affidavit of Edward Sellers, sworn December 22, 2019, para. 9.b; similar statements available in para. 44, 74-78)
We were, certainly, following the court proceedings against the Police of Armenia and the results of the court orders, but in order to confirm the information we had, we filed an official request for information to the Police or Armenia asking them to clarify the situation. Their response, basically, confirmed what we already knew:
- Lydian Armenia’s court complaint was not about removal of blockades but about removal of the protestors’ house-trailers from the territory of the real estate in the ownership of the company. The company had also clarified the geographical location details which were in its ownership.
- Police officers have negotiated with the protesters and moved the house-trailers out of the territory in the ownership of the company and placed them at the roadside.
- The company filed an objection to the police claiming that the house-trailers have remained in the area of its ownership. However, the Police officers, accompanied by other relevant officials and professionals, conducted relevant land measurement actions and ascertained that the mobile house-trailers were not situated in the territory of the units of the real estate under the ownership of the company as well as there were no natural persons in those land plots, hence there was not any trespassory entry. Requirements under the court order VD/9786/05/18 have been adhered in full.
The above mentioned affidavit and other documents presented to the Ontario Court are full of similar wrongful data, and unfortunately, relevant public bodies of Armenia are undertaking no visible steps to confront or at least to voice out misinformation about their actions.
Armenian Environmental Front (AEF) civil initiative
Email: [email protected]