14. January 2011 16:57
ASIC has announced that it has filed an application for special leave to appeal to the High Court from the recent judgment of the NSW Court of Appeal in Morley & Ors v ASIC  NSWCA 331 (the judgment related to claimed breaches of the Corporations Act by James Hardie directors and executives).
ASIC chair Tony D'Aloisio states:
In applying for special leave to appeal, ASIC is seeking clarification of the content and scope of ASIC’s obligations in the conduct of civil penalty proceedings. Seeking this clarification is in the public interest, as it will be of considerable significance for how regulatory agencies such as ASIC conduct civil enforcement proceedings. ASIC is also seeking to uphold the finding of the trial judge that the directors of James Hardie approved the ASX announcement made by the company and, in doing so, breached their duty to the company.
If granted special leave, ASIC will contend that the Court of Appeal erred in describing the scope and content of ASIC’s obligations when bringing civil penalty proceedings and in the way the Court's view of ASIC’s obligations affected the outcome of the appeal.
It will, to say the least, be interesting to see how this turns out.