You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

'Very satisfied' Oswals settle ANZ case

AAP logoAAP 21/09/2016 Angus Livingston

Indian business couple Pankaj and Radhika Oswal are "very satisfied" with their settlement with the ANZ Bank, even though it's believed to be at least $2 billion short of the $2.5 billion they sought.

They are pleased Victoria's largest commercial trial, which started this year, is over after almost six years of legal action.

The former Perth pair had been seeking damages from the ANZ and receivers over the sale of their Australian fertiliser business.

They argued the $US560 million ($A734 million) sale of their 65 per cent Burrup Holdings stake in 2012 represented less than half its true value.

Thursday's confidential settlement is believed to be worth hundreds of millions of dollars.

Justice Julie Dodds-Streeton released orders dismissing the various court actions in the Supreme Court of Victoria on Thursday without the parties appearing in person.

"The Oswals are very satisfied with the settlement and pleased the matter is over," the couple's spokesman said in a statement.

"They are grateful the Australian justice system allowed them to tell the Australian public what happened at Burrup before and after the receivership."

The ANZ said the impact of the settlement would be reflected in an additional provision charge of $145 million taken at the full-year 2016 results.

The $145 million charge is effectively the amount the bank will pay in excess of the original funds it set aside.

"The $145 million figure the ANZ described as 'an additional provision charge' does not reflect the size of the settlement," the Oswals' spokesman confirmed.

"(But) we are bound by a confidentiality agreement not to disclose the settlement terms."

The Oswals said it was "curious" the ANZ rejected their allegations but was prepared to pay a significant sum to end the legal wrangling.

The complex civil case also included allegations Pankaj Oswal misappropriated $150 million in company funds, but that claim has also been dropped.

Further, the Oswals have settled with the Australian Taxation Office "and are now free to leave Australia", their spokesman said.

During the Supreme Court action a senior bank official was accused of physically assaulting Mr Oswal by putting him in "an aggressive sort of headlock" when the pair was alone during an impasse in negotiations in December 2009.

The Oswals also accused ANZ of racial bigotry.

Mrs Oswal claimed during the trial that the bank pressured her into signing a guarantee over $US568 million in debts - after initially wanting her to be personally liable for almost $US1 billion - to prevent her husband going to jail for fraud over falsified security documents.

"There was no way out. I had a gun at my head," Mrs Oswal told the trial.

The bank denies pressuring Mrs Oswal into signing the guarantees.

ANZ chief executive Shayne Elliott on Thursday "completely" rejected the allegations made against the bank's staff.

"However, we believe the settlement is the right decision for shareholders bearing in mind the residual risks in a case of this size and complexity," Mr Elliott said.

The Oswals' unfinished derelict Perth mansion, dubbed the Taj Mahal on the Swan, will be demolished after October 3.

The couple spent more than $40 million on the property but abandoned it and fled Australia a few days before the ANZ appointed receivers in December 2010.

The local council will pursue the Oswals to recover the $300,000 cost of the demolition.

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon