BSG Resources wins Rio RICO US court case

A US Southern District of New York Judge dismissed on all counts the RICO complaint made by Rio Tinto Plc ("Rio") in August 2014 against BSG Resources (“BSGR”), Beny Steinmetz and other defendants including Brazilian mining company VALE SA.

The unequivocal dismissal of the case with prejudice on Friday 20th of November 2015, by the Honorable Judge Richard Berman, bars Rio from re-pleading its case and represents a significant victory for BSGR in its efforts to ensure the truth in relation to Simandou is properly set out.

The court's decision was based on the following:

  • Rio failed to allege any sufficient or coherent claim against BSGR and Mr Steinmetz under the United States’ Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act 1970 ("RICO") and Rio's conspiracy claim under RICO did not and could not, therefore, exist;
  • Rio's RICO claims were long ago time barred, and should never have been brought;
  • The Court refused even to consider Rio's New York state based fraud claims against BSGR and Mr Steinmetz, which were similarly baseless;
  • By dismissing the case, BSGR de facto and de jure defeats Rio in the court of law, further demonstrating the baseless allegations brought about by Rio in 2014 against it on flawed information.

This pointless claim, doomed to fail from the moment it was launched, is the latest in a long line of Rio's attempts to harass BSGR and deprive it of its legitimate interest in the Simandou project to the great detriment of Guinea and it people.

Rio's attempts to divert attention from its own scandalous behavior has had the opposite effect, casting a spotlight on the decades in which it failed to live up to its commitments and its own nefarious activities.  Commenting on the US court’s decision on the Rio RICO complaint, James Libson, Executive Partner at Mischon de Reya LLP and legal counsel to BSGR, said:

"On the basis of this decision and what has been learnt in the process BSGR is exploring its options to ensure it is fully compensated for the billions of dollars of damage caused to it by Rio's unlawful conduct."

For further information please contact:

Buchanan                                                        Tel: +44 (0)20 7466 5000

Bobby Morse/Anna Mischniewicz                   Email: [email protected]