Scuze ca n-am observat la timp mesajul asta :) - e din 6 iunie...



 Regal Shares Fall on Report of Executive Crime Probe (Update2) 2005-06-06
07:05 (New York)

      (Adds spokesman in fifth paragraph, link to Romanian mining and
Gabriel Resources in last four paragraphs. Updates shares.)

 By Stephen Voss
      June 6 (Bloomberg) -- Regal Petroleum Plc shares fell after the Sunday
Times newspaper said the U.K.-based oil and gas explorer's chairman was
under investigation by Romanian prosecutors as part of a crackdown on
organized crime and drugs.
      Chairman Frank Timis stepped down as chief executive of Regal on May
18 when the company reported an exploration well in Greece was practically
worthless, contrary to its earlier forecasts. Romania's Ministry for Public
Affairs confirmed the investigation, the paper said yesterday. Romanian
government officials had no immediate comment today.
      Bobby Morse, a spokesman for Regal, said Timis was not involved in any
organized crime in Romania and called the newspaper report ``outrageous
speculation.'' The company was ``not aware'' of any investigation there and
was checking with Romanian authorities, Morse said in a telephone interview
      Regal shares plunged as much as 21 percent earlier today and were down
2.5 pence, or 3.6 percent, at 68 pence as of 11:43 a.m. in London. The stock
is down 80 percent so far this year, making it the fifth-worst performer of
673 small U.K. stocks tracked by the FTSE Alternative Investment Market
all-share index.
      ``The share price is being affected by poor sentiment to the company
because of the article and press coverage,'' Morse said of today's plunge.
``The company is going to respond after going through the appropriate
channels, having a proper legal look at these allegations and responding in
due course.''

                            Shares Drop

      Regal shares slumped 61 percent on May 18 on the disappointing Greek
oil well, then fell 31 percent on May 31 when it reported its full-year loss
for 2004 widened to $13.7 million, from $2.9 million in 2003. Regal also
slashed its estimate of its recoverable reserves in Greece by 70 percent on
May 31.
      The company operates in Greece, Romania, Ukraine and Egypt.
Before founding Regal in 1996, Timis was convicted twice in Australia of
possessing heroin with intent to sell, in 1990 and 1994, according to
company documents.
      The Sunday Times said Timis was under investigation by prosecutors
attached to Romania's supreme court, the High Court of Cassation and
Justice. He's also the subject of inquiries by the Military Court of Appeal
in Bucharest and the regional Court of Appeal in Alba-Iulia, the newspaper
      The investigations came to light through a response to a
freedom-of-information request by Alburnus Maior, a Romanian group
campaigning to stop a gold mine development in Romania by Gabriel Resources
Ltd., a company originally founded by Timis.

                         Chairman's Ouster

      Timis was ousted as chairman and chief executive of Toronto-based
Gabriel in March 2003 and resigned as a director in May 2003. The demotion
followed an internal investigation in January 2003 sought by Peter Hickson,
who was then the president and chief operating officer of Gabriel, into
alleged illegal and unethical conduct by Gabriel, according to company
Hickson had requested that the board remove Timis as chairman.
      Timis no longer has any shares or management role in Gabriel, said
Regal spokesman Morse at Buchanan Communications.
      He owns 7 percent and 8 percent of Regal and has the full support of
Regal's board of directors, Morse said. ``At this stage, Frank is very
important part of the company, which he founded.''

 --With reporting by Bogdan Preda in Bucharest. Editor: A. Brown, King

 Story illustration: To compare shares to industry benchmarks, see {RPT LN
<Equity> COMP YTD <GO>}. Click {OTOP <GO>} for today's top oil news. See
{ETOP <GO>} for Bloomberg's top energy stories.

 To contact the reporter on this story:
Stephen Voss in London at (44) 20 7073 3520 or at
To contact the editor for this story:
Tim Coulter at (44) (207) 330-7901 or [EMAIL PROTECTED]

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