Hanlong Mining Managing Director, Steven Hui Xiao, Vice President Calvin Zhu and employee Fan Zhang have resigned until the investigation related to proposed investments in two Australian miners is concluded. All of them have been asked to stay in Australia whilst legal issues pending are resolved.
Hanlong Mining is a subsidiary of Hong Kong-based parent, Sichuan Hanlong. The Australian Securities & Investments Commission has frozen the assets of the company and imposed travelling bans on them as well. The investigation is looking into possible insider trading in two deals that have a combined value of more than $ 1.35 billion.
The shares of the two target Australian companies Sundance Resources, an iron ore explorer and Bannerman Resources, an uranium explorer, came crashing down by 10 % as the investigation details came to be known. There is widespread speculation of the deals going through now.
The New South Wales Supreme Court has frozen the assets of two other individuals including Mr Xiao’s wife, Xike Hu. She is also not to leave Australia till the court reaches a decision in the matter. Mr Xiao was given permission to travel to Hong Kong for one day and return as he had to fulfil obligations of buying a home there.
A company called Wingatta Pty. Ltd. which has Mr Zhang as director and is registered to a riverfront apartment in Sydney also had its assets frozen. Justice Reginald Barrett said that ASIC's evidence raised "a distinct possibility" that Mr Xiao had profited from transactions in a way that involved damage to other parties" as he made the statement.
Peter Kerr, the chief financial officer of Bannerman Resources, said that at this stage, they were sticking with their earlier statement that for the time being the negotiations are continuing. The Hanlong group is more than just two people he added.