Tax Office presses on with Tinkler wind-up
NATHAN TINKLER'S battle with creditors goes on, the Tax Office set to continue wind-up proceedings against his main private entity, Tinkler Group Holdings.
Lawyers for the Deputy Commissioner of Taxation appeared in the NSW Supreme Court on Friday and are likely to apply to replace the NSW Office of State Revenue as petitioning creditor in the liquidation proceedings.
Tinkler Group Holdings has settled claims from the Office of State Revenue, Gilbert & Tobin and Newcastle security company Internet Fraud Watchdog.
A lawyer for Internet Fraud, John Woodward of Turnbull Hill, said his client had been paid the $145,000 owed and would withdraw its application to continue the wind-up.
''We're out of it now,'' he said.
Liquidators have already been appointed to two Tinkler entities, Mulsanne Resources, which owes $28 million to listed explorer Blackwood Corporation, and Patinack Farm Administration, which was wound up on Wednesday in the Federal Court in Adelaide over a $17,000 debt owed to WorkCover South Australia.
A Tinkler group spokesman said the failure to pay the debt was an ''administrative error''. Patinack Farm has since paid the debt and assured liquidator Anthony Matthews it will settle all debts in full.
The liquidator will make a statement on Monday about whether the proceedings will be terminated.
The liquidation of Patinack Farm Administration - although accidental - has triggered a legal process that is now a growing headache.
''It is a monumental stuff-up,'' said insolvency specialist Raymond Roser, of Woods & Day Solicitors, who represented WorkCover NSW in last week's wind-up application against the same company.
Those proceedings were dismissed after Patinack settled its unspecified debts and no other creditors - including the Tax Office, which the liquidator says is still owed $4 million - applied to keep the wind-up going.
''This is massive,'' Mr Roser said of the Patinack Farm dilemma. ''It just doesn't happen for a company of this size to be wound up in this fashion, it's very rare.
''In this case, someone has dropped the ball and it's not something you can just turn around easily.''
Mr Roser said under the Corporations Act an application to terminate the wind-up could come from the liquidator, a creditor or a shareholder (in this case there is only one, Tinkler Group Holdings, itself the subject of wind-up proceedings).
Mr Roser said that the court would consider a range of public interest criteria when it determined the application, including the attitude of creditors and the liquidator, the current trading position and general solvency of the company, any non-compliance by directors with their statutory duties as to the giving of information or furnishing a statement of affairs and whether or not the conduct of the company was in any way contrary to ''commercial morality''.