One.Tel creditors chase media tycoon's sons
James Packer and Lachlan Murdoch, sons of two of Australia's most successful media tycoons, are targets of an A$244 million (€170 million) lawsuit around the 2001 collapse of One.Tel.
The long-anticipated lawsuit, which also targets the Packer family's Consolidated Media Holdings, has been filed by One.Tel's liquidator on behalf of its creditors, the Sydney Morning Herald said.
It aims to recoup funds pledged by PBL and News Ltd, a News Corp subsidiary, to underwrite a A$132 million share issue needed to keep One.Tel afloat in 2001, plus a further A$112 million in interest.
The collapse of One.Tel in 2001 left creditors including Optus, Cisco and Telstra A$284 million out of pocket.
Packer - son of deceased media baron Kerry Packer - and Murdoch - whose father owns News Corp. and Fox - are former One.Tel board members.
If the suit is successful, the A$132 million will be paid to the litigation funding firm fronting the cost for the lawsuit, while the interest payment will go to One.Tel's creditors.