October 7, 2021
The State Government spent more than $12 million in legal costs pursuing Linc Energy over its failed underground coal gasification project near Chinchilla.
The Department of Environment and Science incurred $11.1 million in legal expenses in relation to its prosecution of Linc.
In April 2018, Linc was fined $4.5 million for causing serious environmental harm at its UCG site after being found guilty in the Brisbane District Court.
Administrators were appointed to the company in April 2016, two years after the charges were laid. Linc was placed into liquidation a month later.
The prosecution of four former Linc Energy executives and related civil proceedings added another $920,000 to the State Government’s legal bill.
The Crown dropped charges against the former executives in August this year.
The men had been committed to stand trial in March last year, and the matter was due to be heard in the Brisbane District Court.
However, Crown Prosecutor Ralph Devlin QC told the court on August 17 that the Crown would not be proceeding with the indictment.
The legal costs were disclosed in answers to a recent Question on Notice from Member for Burleigh Michael Hart (LNP) to Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, and from a question from the Health and Environment Committee in July to Science Minister Meaghan Scanlon.
Premier Palaszczuk said that as the prosecution of the former executives was now finalised, no additional external legal costs were expected to be incurred.
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