Sefton Resources – Time for another director disclosure?

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I had a day off yesterday from Sefton Resources (LSE:SER) the joke AIM listed oil production company that is suing me for libel. But this morning I am sent, by a pal on the West Coast, a little snippet which I thought might interest you.  It concerns Thomas (Tom) George Milne who was appointed a non exec director on August 9th. His CV at the time sounded jolly impressive and when I met the fellow on October 9th it was explained to me that he was there to give Sefton’s financial reporting function more rigour. Milne’s CV looks good but..

Well I start with what was said about Milne on August 9th by Sefton:

Thomas (Tom) George Milne (aged 65) is a senior financial and management executive with extensive international experience in energy E&P, Pipelines, Oilsands and Communications Technology. Career roles include Chief Financial Officer, Treasurer, Investment Banker, Senior Partner (CA firm) and Foreign Exchange Trader. He has been a Director of both Public and Private companies including Chairman of the Audit Committee for an AMEX-listed Oilsands company. He is currently the Chairman and a Director of Precise Details Inc (a family owned company) and is also a Director of TSX-listed Hillcrest Resources Ltd and Canshale Corp (a private company).  

In the last five years, Tom has also been a Director of Newton Energy Corp, Newton Energy UK Ltd, Norfolk Resources UK Limited, Enhanced Oil Resources Inc, Added Capital Corp, and Oilsands Quest Inc.

There is no further information required to be disclosed in respect of the above appointment pursuant to Schedule Two paragraph (g) of the AIM Rules.

Okie dokie. Oh, hang on, is that THE Oilsands Quest Inc? Surely not?

Now my correspondent on the West Coast draws to my attention this little snippet from the must read publication – oh, come on I am sure that you read it every day. In case you do not:

A New York federal judge on Thursday preliminarily approved a settlement for more than $10 million in an investor class action against Oilsands Quest Inc. and its former top brass, in which the investors accused the company of overstating asset valuations by more than $136 million. The proposed settlement comes more than four months after U.S. District Judge Jed S. Rakoff lifted a stay of the U.S. case, allowing investors to pursue a lawsuit in which they claimed that Oilsands Quest’s overstatement of asset valuations led to a collapse of the company’s stock price when the error was later revealed.

Lead plaintiffs Marshall Collins, Theodore Koler, Elmer Walker and Gary Dannenberg hailed the $10.2 million settlement as a “significant recovery” in a brief supporting the settlement filed Monday.“Lead plaintiffs and their counsel submit that the proposed settlement is in the best interests of the proposed settlement class and represents a significant recovery, particularly in light of the risks of litigation and the serious obstacles to collecting a judgment,” the brief said.

A hearing will be held on June 14 to determine whether the proposed settlement of the litigation should be approved as reasonable and whether the litigation should be dismissed with prejudice, according to the judge’s order preliminarily approving the settlement.The lead plaintiffs, along with the defendants — Oilsands Quest Inc., former Oilsands Quest consultant McDaniels & Associates Consultants Ltd. and the individual defendants — agree that the settlement is fair, reasonable and adequate, according to the settlement agreement.

The suit is connected to a deal in which Oilsands Quest first acquired a minority stake in OQI Sask in 2004, and then purchased the remaining interest in the operation in August 2006. OQI Sask operates a massive oil sands operation in Saskatchewan, Canada, called Firebag East, and the deal was greeted with glowing approval in the Canadian press, according to court documents.

On July 14, 2009, Oilsands Quest announced that it intended to restate its earnings for fiscal years 2007, 2008 and the first three quarters of 2009, saying the figures should no longer be relied on, according to the complaint, filed on Feb. 24, 2011. The reason for the restatement was that Oilsands Quest had overstated the value of OQI Sask after acquiring the remaining interest in the company in 2006, according to the suit.

In the end, the company revealed that it had overstated the value of its holdings in Saskatchewan by about $136 million, the plaintiffs said. The revelations caused Oilsands Quest stock to drop by about 87 percent from its high point of $6.75 per share, according to the suit. The Oilsands defendants, consisting of the company and the individual defendants, will contribute $10.2 million of the settlement and McDaniel will contribute $35,000.

The settlement was achieved after a comprehensive pre-discovery investigation, significant discovery, the briefing of multiple motions to dismiss and several rounds of mediation, the parties said. Representatives for the parties didn’t immediately return requests for comment on Friday.

Plaintiffs are represented by Judith S. Scolnick, David R. Scott, Beth A. Kaswan and Amanda F. Lawrence of Scott and Scott. The Oilsands defendants are represented by Moses Silverman, Andrew G. Gordon, Robyn F. Tarnofsky and James J. Beha II of Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison LLP.

Thomas Milne and William Scott Thompson are represented by Jennifer M. Osgood of Burns Figa & Will PC. McDaniels & Associates Consultants Ltd. is represented by Matthew T. McLaughlin and David N. Cinotti of Venable LLP. The case is Marshall W. Collins v. Oilsands Quest Inc. et al., case number 1:11-cv-01288, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York

This article appeared on March 9th. No doubt Sefton was about to issue an RNS to keep its shareholders up to speed on this matter but just had not got around to it quite yet. Nor, should I say, has it – after one week – answered my very simple question: “how many flights to and from Hawaii ( where Sefton boss Jim Ellerton lives in a luxury mansion) has Sefton paid for over the past year and since its IPO? If the answer was nil I would have printed that story in full. To date Sefton has refused to answer the question. If you are a Sefton shareholder perhaps you might care to call Cadogan PR and ask the question yourself. The mobile number of Alex Walters at Cadogan PR is 07771 713 608

Of course Sefton has real asset backing as well know well.

In case you missed it the brand new AIM comedy video of the year: Sefton, the Downfall – The Sequel can now be viewed HERE

Tom Winnifrith writes for 10 US and UK financial websites on a wide range of matters not just Sefton Resources. You can follow him on twitter @tomwinnifrith or link in to all of his free to access work at

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  1. Dazv says:

    Everything about Sefton is totally and utterly morally wrong. I am an accountant and the people on the LSE and iii boards supporting Sefton simply cannot see what is coming. Unfortunately, greed is innate and lying is simply part of corporate culture and they should realize , accept it and cut their loses. In fact it seems and looks like the LSE moderators are trying to support Sefton too by banning many anti-Ellertons, which is very interesting given the circumstances.

    Bringing Tom Winnifrith to court will solve nothing and is merely just a circus distraction. I very much doubt Sefton will be able to raise any further funds and I would worryingly expect within the next half year or so the company to be placed in administration. I would say the chances of this happening are 85%.

  2. Nasir says:


    Will Dr Ali be in court on July 11th? I think not George, but Dr Ali is the main key to this whole charade. Dr Ali’s company Star Resources also has had involvement with Ellerton’s ex companies, including, Monument Resources. If you can turn detective and solve this jigsaw puzzle, you should get a resolute victory. All very shady and A lot of things do not add up about this company, so I just hope your defensive is thoroughly well prepared

    Anyway, should you emphatically expose Sefton – you may be able to sue them afterwards, although, you may get death threats from Sefton shareholders.

  3. Nasir says:

    have a look at this:

    Dr Onat’s non ‘independent’ CPR report was probably pure $140m BS

    Correction above: not Dr Ali but Nafi Onat

  4. iPedro says:

    I reckon more like 87.4%

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