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ATV - Asia Television Limited

ATV faces new legal challenge as director seeks release of records

PUBLISHED : Friday, 22 April, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 22 April, 2011, 12:00am

Struggling Asia Television is facing another legal challenge as one of its directors seeks a court order to make the station and its top management surrender records and documents concerning the company's operations that are being kept from its board of directors.

Kevin Tsai Shao-chung, a director appointed by Taiwanese snack tycoon Tsai Eng-meng, filed the application in the High Court yesterday, calling for the company, executive director James Shing Pan-yu, secretary Michelle Ng Yue-wei and ATV Secretarial Company to provide the documents.

According to the court papers, the documents being sought include accounting records and documents concerning ATV's affairs, as well as board papers and correspondence between ATV and the Broadcasting Authority that have been withheld from Kevin Tsai since August of last year.

Minutes of all management committee meetings beginning in September of last year are also being sought.

The legal action was a follow-up to Monday's fruitless action by director Rebecca Huang Bao-huei, also appointed by Tsai Eng-meng, who stormed ATV's headquarters in Tai Po to demand the documents.

A statement issued by Tsai Eng-meng said Kevin Tsai had been repeatedly requesting information on the company's operations and financial status 'in order to enable him to properly discharge his duties as a director' since August.

Kevin Tsai previously wrote to ATV and stated that the requested information should be delivered by noon on Monday.

Huang went to ATV in the company of a lawyer after that deadline had passed, but 'ATV yet again refused to comply with [Kevin] Tsai's request and was unable to provide any justifiable basis for its refusal', the statement said.

That had left Kevin Tsai with no alternative but to file an application with the High Court.

Tsai Eng-meng added in the statement that he questioned ATV's corporate governance because a board meeting had not been called for five months.

Tsai Eng-meng owns 49 per cent of the voting shares of Antenna, which controls more than 47 per cent of ATV. The remaining stake was bought by businessman Wong Ben-koon last year and the transaction was approved by the Broadcasting Authority last September.

A hearing has been scheduled on July 7.