On Friday, I revealed the Texas Community Bank’s legal action against New World Oil & Gas (NEW) CEO Bill Kelleher for his apparent default on a $550,000 debt. This was immediately before New World listed on AIM. Mr Kelleher had secured his unpaid loan on his private yacht, Neftegaz. In the original action the Texas Community Bank sought to take possession of Neftegaz, but by January 14th 2014 it seems that Mr Kelleher still owed $298,846.25 of the original debt. On this date the US District Court Southern District of Texas granted an Order for Turnover Relief against Mr Kelleher. It ordered him to “turn over for levy to the Harris County Constable… within ten days… all shares of stock in New World Oil and Gas, PLC, except those that he is restricted from transferring or selling under the terms of the agreement with his employer, cash and securities in bank and safety deposit accounts totalling $298,846.25”. Funnily enough, I can’t find any reference to this court order in an RNS.
In March 2013, one month before the company announced it had plugged and abandoned the non-commercial Rio Bravo exploration well, New World Oil and Gas (NEW) conducted a highly controversial £6.3million placement at 2p. The controversy stemmed from two sources. First, there was the suspicion that this placement was heavily forward sold, which resulted in the calamitous price. Second, New World lent vehicles controlled by its three executive directors a combined sum of $1million so they could participate in the deeply discounted placement. CEO William Kelleher borrowed $333,000 from the company and the outstanding balance on this amount is due at the end of this month. After yesterday’s revelation of the Texas Community Bank’s legal action against him for nonpayment of >$550,000 in February 2011, will Mr Kelleher repay the money he controversially borrowed?