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Oei Hong Leong in legal spat over Canadian property: report

Thursday, March 3, 2016 - 10:19

WELL-KNOWN tycoon Oei Hong Leong and his company have counter-sued over claims by a company that they were meant to co-develop a piece of land in Canada, a report said this week.

Mr Oei and his company, Canadian Metropolitan Properties Corporation, filed a suit against Concord Pacific Acquisitions in the B.C. Supreme Court earlier this week, Globe and Mail reported on Tuesday.

Concord Pacific had sued Mr Oei and Canadian Metropolitan Properties four months ago, alleging a breach of an agreement involving land at the Plaza of Nations, which was allegedly worth some C$500 million (S$520 million). The site is reportedly a "rare piece of property" with potential for further development on the downtown Vancouver waterfront.

Concord Pacific alleged that Mr Oei bought the land from another one of its affiliates, Concord Pacific Developments, in or about 1989. It claimed Mr Oei had "from time to time" expressed a willingness to sell an interest in the land or enter into a joint agreement.

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Concord Pacific's lawsuit claimed discussions between it and Mr Oei built up in April 2015, and an agreement was concluded between May and August for a Concord Pacific affiliate to acquire a 50 per cent indirect interest in the land, and enter into a joint venture to develop the property.

The lawsuit further claimed that Concord Pacific paid an initial deposit of C$10 million in May, and made an agreement "partly in writing and partly orally". In the report, Concord Pacific's lawsuit claimed Mr Oei and Canadian Metropolitan Properties have now refused to honour the agreement.

Mr Oei and Canadian Metropolitan Properties this week claimed Concord Pacific's claims that an agreement was reached "were entirely false and were known by the defendants to be false".

The lawsuit alleged further that Concord Pacific has made it difficult for Mr Oei and Canadian Metropolitan Properties to work with other developers.

"The defendants thereby sought to induce or compel the plaintiffs . . . to continue negotiations with Concord for the purpose of entering into agreements by which Concord would have an indirect interest in the lands and obtain for itself, or one of its affiliates, agreements to develop, construct, market and sell and/or lease the lands," the report said, citing notice of the civil claim.

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