A U.S. judge dismissed a securities lawsuit against PetroChina on Tuesday that alleged the company failed to disclose corruption it flagged for government investigators and made misleading statements in two annual reports.

According to Bloomberg, U.S. District Judge Edgardo Ramos of Manhattan dismissed the lawsuit after finding the allegations were too vague and determining that the plaintiffs failed to pinpoint any wrongdoing.

The lawsuit, filed in 2013, alleged that PetroChina officials violated U.S. securities laws by failing to disclose alleged bribery, corruption and “undisclosed party transactions,” Reuters said.

The investors were looking to recoup losses incurred by purchasers of PetroChina securities from April 26, 2012, to December 17, 2013, claiming the losses were prompted by news reports of alleged corruption.

Although Judge Ramos said the complaint suggests that government officials suspected corruption at PetroChina he concluded that the plaintiffs failed to identify a specific case of wrongdoing.

The complaint was prompted in part by the 2013 arrest of former general manager of China National Petroleum Corporation Zhou Yongkang.

China National Petroleum Corp is the parent company of PetroChina.

According to the FCPA Blog, Zhou, a former domestic security chief, was placed under house arrest in late 2013 after the government launched a bribery probe into China’s oil industry.

The Chinese government reportedly seized more than $14.5 billion in assets from Zhou as part of its investigation in March 2014, an incident that was included in the investors’ complaint.

Jude Ramos wrote that the complaint “does not indicate when this event occurred, nor does it specify when Yongkang undertook any acts of corruption, what they consisted of, or whether they had any connection to PetroChina whatsoever.”

Zhou, 72, was sentenced to life in prison in June for corruption and other crimes, the AFP reported.

The suit also claimed that PetroChina made false or misleading statements about its internal control for financial reporting and corporate governance practices in its 2011 and 2012 annual reports.
 Judge Ramos found that the investors could not tie the incidences together or prove how the alleged misconduct made the company’s statements false.
The “plaintiffs never specify when that conduct occurred or how it rendered PetroChina’s public statement false,” Judge Ramos wrote.
The judge also found that there was no proof that individual defendants named in the complaint know of or recklessly ignored alleged corruption, Reuters added.


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