Nov. 20 Green Valley screenings set for Hudbay Minerals documentary

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Three-time Arizona Journalist of the Year John Dougherty will present his documentary “Flin Flon Flim Flam” at two screenings on Nov. 20 in Green Valley.

The 51-minute film reports on Toronto-based miner Hudbay Minerals‘ worldwide operations and the company’s plans for the proposed Rosemont open-pit copper mine in the Santa Rita Mountains on the Coronado National Forest east of Tucson.

Dougherty will host a question/answer session following the screenings.

The film will be shown at 9 a.m. at the Desert Sky Cinema, 70 W. Duval Road, in Sahuarita and at 7 p.m. at the Madera Clubhouse, 2055 E. Quail Crossing Road in Green Valley. A suggested donation of $10 will benefit the nonprofit Arizona Center for Investigative Journalism, Inc.Screen Shot 2015-11-12 at 2.53.00 PM

The exposé reveals how Hudbay contaminated its home community in Flin Flon, Manitoba with high levels of heavy metals from a smelter the company operated for more than 80 years.

The documentary also reports on the impact to residents of Hudbay’s former mine in El Estor, Guatemala where the company’s security guards allegedly clashed with residents over land claims. A Mayan community leader was shot to death and another man left  paralyzed in the September 2009 violence.

Hudbay is now the target of a three, precedent-setting civil suits in Toronto that have withstood the company’s attempts to have the case thrown out. The cases are proceeding to trial. The cases mark the first time a Canadian company is being held accountable in Canadian courts for the acts of an overseas subsidiary.

Dougherty also reports on demonstrations and community opposition to Hudbay’s recently opened Constancia open pit copper mine in Uchucarco, Peru. Residents in the community were beaten and teargassed by Peruvian National Police wearing rain gear provided by Hudbay Minerals. Residents in the rural community claim Hudbay has reneged on its promises to the community in exchange for rights to the land for the open pit mine.

The film also reports on the environmental destruction that would occur if Hudbay Minerals obtains state and federal permits to construct the Rosemont mine on the northeastern face of the Santa Rita Mountains and the threat to Green Valley’s water supply from Hudbay’s planned groundwater pumping. Hudbay has promised to replace groundwater it pumps from the Santa Cruz River Valley with Central Arizona Project Canal water. Critics, however, cast doubt that Hudbay will be able to fulfill its promise as Colorado River supplies continue to decline.

Pima County Supervisor Ray Carroll criticizes the company for engaging in what he says is a “cover up” and “white collar malfeasance” over Hudbay’s failure to publicly disclose to its shareholders and regulators that its Air Quality Control permit for the Rosemont project was overturned last February by a Maricopa County Superior Court judge.

The film premiered on Oct. 20 at the Loft Cinema in Tucson drawing more than 150 people. The documentary screened a second time at the Loft Cinema on Nov. 1.

This is the second documentary produced by Dougherty on the proposed Rosemont mine project.

Local Green Valley residents pack the house for Cyanide Beach.

Local Green Valley residents pack the house for Cyanide Beach.

The 2012 film Cyanide Beach”  revealed the checkered history of the top executives of Augusta Resource Corporation, the previous owners of the Rosemont mine site.

The film won first place as best educational film at the Yosemite International Film festival and attracted large crowds at screenings across southern  Arizona.

Hudbay acquired Augusta in 2014 in a $500 million stock deal.

 

InvestigativeMEDIA’s documentary on Hudbay Minerals to screen Nov. 1 in Tucson

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FLIN FLON FLIM FLAMScreen Shot 2015-10-23 at 8.17.52 PM

4 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 1

The Loft Cinema

3233 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85716

$10 (benefits Arizona Center for Investigative Journalism, Inc., a nonprofit 501-c3)

………………………………………….

InvestigativeMEDIA turns its unflinching focus on Canadian miner Hudbay Minerals Inc. and its controversial plans to construct the massive Rosemont open-pit copper mine in the Santa Rita Mountains on the Coronado National Forest southeast of Tucson.

InvestigativeMEDIA’s John Dougherty documents Hudbay’s legacy of lead poisoning in a remote Manitoba community where the company operated a notorious copper smelter for 80 years.

He then turns to Hudbay’s former operations in Guatemala where the company stands accused of murder, rape and shootings in a precedent setting civil trial.

Dougherty travels to the Peruvian Andes documenting indigenous villagers occupying a mine site after Peruvian police beat and teargased protestors angry over Hudbay’s failure to abide by an agreement.

Dougherty uncovers Hudbay’s misleading statements over its proposed Rosemont copper project and the ecological treasure that would be destroyed if the mine were constructed. (Dir. by John Dougherty, 2015, in English/Spanish/English subtitles, 51 mins.)

InvestigativeMEDIA’S documentary “Flin Flon Flim Flam” to premiere Oct. 18 in Tucson

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FLIN FLON FLIM FLAM

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 18, AT 4 PM

$10 (benefits Arizona Center for Investigative Journalism, Inc., a nonprofit 501-c3)

………………………………………….

InvestigativeMEDIA turns its unflinching focus on Canadian miner Hudbay Minerals Inc. and its controversial plans to construct the massive Rosemont open-pit copper mine in the Santa Rita Mountains on the Coronado National Forest southeast of Tucson.

InvestigativeMEDIA’s John Dougherty documents Hudbay’s legacy of lead poisoning in a remote Manitoba community where the company operated a notorious copper smelter for 80 years.

He then turns to Hudbay’s former operations in Guatemala where the company stands accused of murder, rape and shootings in a precedent setting civil trial.

Dougherty travels to the Peruvian Andes documenting indigenous villagers occupying a mine site after Peruvian police beat and teargased protestors angry over Hudbay’s failure to abide by an agreement.

Dougherty uncovers Hudbay’s misleading statements over its proposed Rosemont copper project and the ecological treasure that would be destroyed if the mine were constructed. (Dir. by John Dougherty, 2015, in English/Spanish/English subtitles, 48 mins.)

Augusta Resource’s top officers have a history of bankruptcies, cease trade orders and stock exchange delistings

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Augusta Resource Corporation Chairman Richard Warke and board member Donald B. Clark have been business partners for more than two decades.

Warke, a venture stock promoter, and Clark, a banker, have served on the board of directors of several Vancouver, B.C.-based public companies.

From their offices in the Terminal City Tower overlooking downtown Vancouver’s waterfront, Warke and Clark now manage several speculative mining companies including Augusta Resource Corporation, Wildcat Silver Corporation and Riva Gold Corporation.

Augusta owns the Rosemont Copper Company, which is seeking permits to build an open pit copper mine in the Santa Rita Mountains south of Tucson. Wildcat Silver is seeking government permits to construct a silver mine near Patagonia, Ariz. Riva Gold has mining claims in Guyana.

Richard Warke

Their business partnership began in 1991, when both men served on the board of First Western Metals. First Western ran into financial difficulties and was issued cease trade orders by Canadian securities regulators in 1991 and 1992. First Western later changed its name to Augusta Metals Corp. before acquiring Cybercom, Inc.

Warke and Clark were on the Cybercom board when Canadian regulators issued the education software company a cease trade order in 2002 for failing to file annual financial statements. The CTO was never lifted.

Warke and Clark also served on the board of directors of West Coast Plywood Company and were corporate officers when the company filed for bankruptcy in July 1995.

Wark and Clark, along with four other current and former board members of Augusta Resource, served on the board of Sargold Resource Corporation. Sargold operated an open-pit gold mine in Sardinia. See related story and documentary.

Clark also has an extensive background on the board of directors of several U.S. corporations, most notably, Pasadena, Calif.-based Conversion Industries, Inc.

Clark resigned from the Conversion board of directors in October 1994, 12 days after the American Stock Exchange announced its intention to delist Conversion for alleged trading irregularities.

Donald Clark

Conversion reached a settlement agreement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in March 1995 and agreed to be delisted from the AMEX. Conversion filed bankruptcy in May 1995.

Warke’s business history includes a 1989 insider trading settlement agreement with a British Columbia Securities Commission and a personal bankruptcy proposal filed in September 1998 and satisfied in November 2002.

Warke is listed on the British Columbia Securities Commission website under the commission’s “Disciplined Persons and Investment Caution” section.

The corporate and personal bankruptcies, stock exchange delistings and cease trade orders described above were not disclosed in some subsequent filings by public companies that included Warke and Clark as directors. Among these companies is Augusta Resource.

Warke’s personal bankruptcy was frequently omitted from corporate disclosures that require personal bankruptcies to be reported for 10 years. Augusta Resource, for example, did not disclose Warke’s bankruptcy filing even as the case was ongoing between Sept. 15, 1998 and Nov. 22, 2002.

Augusta Resource did not disclose Warke’s bankruptcy until April 6, 2006, regulatory filings indicate. Augusta Resource continued to disclose Warke’s bankruptcy in 2007 and 2008.

The company, as well as other public companies that include Warke and Clark on the board of directors, have not disclosed the bankruptcy since October 2008, except on one occasion.

Ventana Gold Corporation disclosed the bankruptcy on Oct. 31, 2008, which is more than 10 years after Warke filed the petition on Sept. 15, 1998.

The company stated: “The Trustee acting in the Proposal certified the Proposal as fully performed on November 21, 2002 and he was thereby discharged.”

British Columbia Securities Commission Deputy Director of Finance Andrew Richardson stated in a Dec. 15, 2010 telephone interview that personal bankruptcy proceedings must be reported on corporate disclosures for 10 years from the date of filing the initial case and continuing through the date the bankruptcy is concluded. If a case takes four years to conclude, the effective disclosure period is 14 years, he said.

In early September, BCSC spokesman Richard Gilhooley stated in an email that the 10-year disclosure period is not tied to the conclusion date of a bankruptcy. Gilhooley said there are certain events, however, that can trigger the initiation of the 10-year disclosure period beyond the initial filing date of the bankruptcy.

Gilhooley said the Commission does not have a “definitive answer” of whether Warke’s October 2002 bankruptcy default is a triggering event that requires disclosure of the bankruptcy for 10 years from the default date.

InvestigativeMEDIA has included all known examples of companies failing to disclose Warke’s bankruptcy from 2000 through 2012 in a written and video timeline of the business history of Augusta Resource’s longtime business partners. [Read more…]