A nasty business dispute that pitted a Halifax billionaire against another businessman has ended quietly with a consent order in Nova Scotia Supreme Court.
John Risley's firm CFFI Ventures Inc., accused Issam Alzahed of fraudulent misrepresentation and conspiracy that cost the company about $15 million Cdn.
In documents filed in November 2018, CFFI said Alzahed, a Saudi national and Canadian citizen who was living in Bedford, N.S., "held himself out to CFFI as being a person of great wealth and vast international business experience and influence."
The document goes on to lay out a business deal in which Alzahed was to sell Risley, the co-founder of Clearwater Fine Foods Inc., shares in an Austrian company.
The deal faltered and in the lawsuit, CFFI alleged "all such prior representations made by Mr. Alzahed to CFFI were knowingly fraudulent, false and misleading."
Both sides reach settlement
What a difference two years make.
During that time, the two parties discussed their differences and reached a settlement leading to the consent order.
In a statement attached to the notice ending the lawsuit, Risley wrote: "There was no fraud or conspiracy involved, rather a business dispute resulting from a series of interactions and proposed ventures which did not materialize as all had hoped."
Alzahed's lawyer, Gordon Allen, said that letter from Risley was important to his client.
"If these things were stated outside of pleadings and in court where there's qualified privilege, it was his position that they would have been in fact defamatory and without merit," Allen said.
A confidentiality agreement that forms part of the consent order prevents either side from talking about the deal in detail.
MORE TOP STORIES