Market regulator fingers Energy Earth trio
Executives accused of concealing truth
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has accused three executives of Energy Earth Plc of failure to submit documents and concealment of the truth from investors.
The SEC worked with the Department of Special Investigation (DSI), using their framework to investigate the company's ownership rights of its two Indonesian coal mines.
The case has been forwarded to the Anti-Money Laundering Office.
Energy Earth has been de-listed from the Stock Exchange of Thailand (SET) index since Sept 20 because of the company's failure to submit financial statements by the bourse's deadline.
In addition, the company faces another probe into 12 billion baht in loans granted by Krungthai Bank after the miner failed to redeem two lots of bills of exchange worth 90 million due in June 2017.
The three Energy Earth executives are Sawin Chindakul, Paradee Teawanitchakul and Noppadon Chaidarun.
The SEC's allegation stems from the regulator ordering Energy Earth to clarify and disclose information related to its ownership rights of two mines in Indonesia.
According to EY Corporate Advisory Services Co Ltd, the previous business rehabilitation planner of Energy Earth, the appraisal report stated Energy Earth acquired the ownership rights of the two mines by exchanging assets under its group of companies worth around 24 billion baht.
Energy Earth, however, did not submit or report such documents to the SEC, considered a violation of the regulator's order and concealing truthful information that should be disclosed to investors.
On Feb 7, the company disclosed to the SET the value of its two mines, with one of them worth 25.1 billion baht and another valued at 29 billion, citing an appraisal report conducted by two appraisers hired by Energy Earth.
But the SEC's examination found the two appraisal reports indicated Energy Earth included its alleged coal sales in the total value of its coal mines.
In truth, the coal could not be excavated and the company had no ownership rights because its rights did not fall under the concession period.
The reports also indicated Energy Earth will begin coal excavation in 2019 and 2020.
Energy Earth had a liquidity problem and there was uncertainty whether the company could allocate funds to begin coal excavation, according to the SEC.
The company's act was therefore considered a dissemination of messages that caused misunderstanding.
The SEC's allegation is an initial process of criminal law enforcement. The DSI, public prosecutors and the courts of justice will determine whether the accused are guilty.