September 9, 2020 - A consolidated complaint was filed.
May 24, 2019 - An investor in shares of Hecla Mining Company (NYSE: HL) filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York over alleged violations of Federal Securities Laws by Hecla Mining Company in connection with certain allegedly false and misleading statements made between March 19, 2018 and May 8, 2019.
Cour d’Alene, ID based Hecla Mining Company, together with its subsidiaries, discovers, acquires, develops, and produces precious and base metal properties worldwide.
On March 19, 2018, Hecla Mining Company announced it was acquiring three high-grade Nevada gold mines through the acquisition of Klondex Mines Ltd. for a mix of cash and stock worth $462 million. Hecla's President and CEO, Defendant Baker, represented that Klondex's three operating mines – Fire Creek, Midas and Hollister – are some of the highest-grade gold mines in the world and that [a]fter extensive due diligence, we see significant opportunity to improve costs, throughput and recoveries over time with our expertise.
The on May 9, 2019, Hecla Mining Company issued a press release entitled Hecla Reports First Quarter Results Nevada operations under review, in which the Company disclosed a comprehensive review of its Nevada operations that it characterized during the ensuing conference call as really just asking the question, are we going to get the return for the investment we're making. Hecla Mining Company disclosed that its Nevada operations suffered from negative cash flow and other negative operating metrics, that it was unclear whether Hecla Mining Company would ever get a positive return on its investment in the Nevada operations, and that Hecla Mining Company might write off the Nevada operations. Additionally, Hecla Mining Company reported a net loss of over $25 million for the first quarter of 2019 based in large part on a gross loss of $13.8 million from its Nevada operations.
Shares of Hecla Mining Company (NYSE: HL) declined from $4.63 per share in early 2018 to as low as $1.21 per share on May 28, 2019.
According to the complaint the plaintiff alleges on behalf of purchasers of Hecla Mining Company (NYSE: HL) common shares between March 19, 2018 and May 8, 2019, that the defendants violated Federal Securities Laws.
More specifically, the plaintiff claims that between March 19, 2018 and May 8, 2019, the Defendants falsely and misleadingly represented that the Nevada operations would be accretive and cash flow positive, or at the very least self-funding , but this was not true. As admitted by the Defendants at the end of the Class Period, the Defendants knew from their extensive due diligence that the Nevada mines faced many undisclosed material problems that would prevent the operations from being cash flow positive, or even cash flow neutral. Specifically, Defendants were aware from their extensive due diligence that the Nevada operations had material problems in terms of excessive water, equipment availability, achieving enough development to have consistent production, and lack of characterization of ore types, among other things.