Former G8 Education chair Hutson charged
The former chairperson of childcare provider G8 Education is facing charges including giving false information and dishonest use of her position in relation to an abandoned takeover bid launched by G8 in 2015.
The Australian Securities and Investments Commission brought 30 charges against Jennifer Joan Hutson, 50, of Red Hill in Queensland, in the Brisbane Magistrates' Court on Tuesday.
The charges follow an ASIC investigation into ASX-listed G8's bid for rival childcare firm Affinity Education in 2015.
Ms Hutson, who resigned as G8 chairperson in October, 2015, faces charges including dishonestly failing to exercise her powers and discharge her duties as a director, two counts of dishonest use of her position as a director, 15 counts of giving false or misleading information, and two counts of attempting to pervert the course of justice.
The charges have been listed for mention in the Brisbane Magistrates' Court on June 8, 2018.
G8 Education announced a $162 million takeover bid for the then-ASX-listed Affinity in July, 2015.
G8 raised its offer in August but was trumped by a $213 million bid by private equity firm Anchorage Capital Partners.
Ms Hutson quit as G8 chairperson in the wake of the failed takeover attempt.
Following complaints by Affinity, the Takeovers Panel made a declaration of unacceptable circumstances in relation to G8's bids, finding that share trades by entities associated with Ms Hutson breached corporations law.
A super fund and two private companies linked to Ms Hutson bought shares in Affinity after G8 launched its bid in July.
Two of these later traded shares under G8's improved on-market scrip bid for Affinity.
The panel said Affinity shareholders were not given enough information to assess the merits of G8's bid, and the company's acquisition of Affinity shares did not take place in a competitive and informed market.
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