Friday 28 April 2017

Gaelectric embroiled in dispute with former partner over fraud allegations

John Mulligan

John Mulligan

Gaelectric has accused its former joint-venture partner in the US of "misappropriation of company funds", "fraudulent activity" and a "glaring lack of internal controls" in a complaint filed with a court in Washington state.

In documents seen by the Irish Independent, the US firm, Airdynamics, contests the allegations, countering that Gaelectric Northwest has engaged in “fraud and illegal activities that warrant dismissal of its claims”.

Venture

Gaelectric Northwest was established in 2008 when Gaelectric and Airdynamics agreed to a venture that was expected to develop about 4,000 megawatts of windpower projects.

Airdynamics, headed by John Laney and David Richards, also alleged that Gaelectric Northwest manipulated the financial picture of the joint venture with a “goal of minimising the expense of dissolution of the company”.

Airdynamics and its two principals have also accused Gaelectric Northwest of failing to pay a promised $100,000 (€73,400) as an offset for securing extended leases on land that would be used for wind energy development.

Gaelectric Northwest alleged it loaned Airdynamics $100,000 that had not been repaid.

Gaelectric Northwest’s complaint against Airdynamics, Mr Laney and Mr Richards also claimed the defendants had misrepresented the extent and value of their potential development pipeline and had been engaged in “selfinterested transactions harmful to the business of Gaelectric Northwest”. Mr Laney and Mr Richards deny those claims.

Both sides have asked the Washington court to appoint a mediator to examine the arguments, and both have sought damages.

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