Victoria Gold settles lawsuit outside of court; security deposit stayed

Claim alleged shareholders were misled in company’s disclosure documents

The access road to Victoria Gold in 2021. (Lawrie Crawford/Yukon News)

The access road to Victoria Gold in 2021. (Lawrie Crawford/Yukon News)

An out-of-court settlement has been reached in a class action lawsuit brought against Victoria Gold in May 2021.

The claim alleged shareholders were misled by representations in the company’s disclosure documents regarding mine operations, volume of production and costs of production at Victoria Gold’s Eagle mine near Mayo.

The settlement agreement details can be found on the website of KND Complex Litigation, a law company that advocates for integrity in capital markets in Canada. The settlement agreement restricts either party from commenting or issuing press releases on the matter, though information can be found on both Victoria Gold’s website and the law company’s site, Victoria Gold disclosed the lawsuit on its website when it was first filed.

The proposed settlement amount is $925,000, including lawyers’ fees and taxes.

The class action includes all people who purchased shares of Victoria Gold in specific share offerings in 2020, unless they specifically opt out.

Those people have three choices: They can do nothing and remain included in the settlement agreement; they can object to the terms in the settlement agreement by Nov. 3; or opt out of the settlement agreement by Nov. 8.

In the settlement agreement Victoria Gold does not admit any wrong doing, and the agreement clearly acknowledges that the case was concluded to avoid the time, risk and expense of continuing with the litigation.

Security deposit stayed

The Yukon Supreme Court has granted Victoria Gold more time to appeal the additional security amount required by the Yukon Water Board. In her decision, released Sept. 28, Justice Karen Wenckebach ordered that the payment of approximately $36 million shall be stayed until 30 days after a decision in the appeal put forward by Victoria Gold.

Thirty-six million dollars is the difference between the security amounts leveled by the Yukon government and the Yukon Water Board in June 2022 for closure of Victoria Gold’s eagle minesite. A spokesperson for the territorial department of Energy, Mines and Resources said that although the review process was joint, two different security amounts were ordered, and when that occurs, the higher amount is to prevail. It is the differential between the two orders that Victoria Gold is appealing.

The increase had been ordered following a joint review process of Victoria Gold’s reclamation and closure plan for 2020-2021. These plans are submitted every two years and are reviewed by the two regulatory authorities for the mining industry, the Yukon government under the Quartz Mining Act and the Yukon Water Board under the Yukon Waters Act.

As of Oct. 4, the News confirmed that Victoria Gold had furnished security in the amount of the $68 million the Yukon government required. This amount is double the $30 million on the books before the review process began.

The Government of Yukon declined to present a position to the court during the initial hearing, as did the First Nation of Na-cho Nyak Dun. The two governments remain as parties in the appeal process, and both can take a position at any time during the process, or not.

A case management meeting will be held with the chief justice and the parties within a few weeks to decide on next steps and dates.

Contact Lawrie Crawford at