Frank Stronach sues his daughter Belinda in family battle over racetrack empire

John Cherwa, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Business News

LOS ANGELES -- An internal family struggle for control got considerably uglier when Frank Stronach, founder and honorary chairman of Stronach Group, filed suit against his daughter Belinda Stronach, chairman and president, alleging she has mismanaged the family assets and trust funds and pushed him out of any control of the company.

Santa Anita and five other racetracks are among the company's assets.

The 73-page suit was filed in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in Toronto on Oct. 1. The contents of the suit were first reported by the Thoroughbred Daily News.

Frank Stronach, 86, alleges that Belinda Stronach, 52, along with Alon Ossip, chief executive of the company, purposely kept information from Frank, ignored his wishes, and conducted "covert and unlawful actions" that were to the detriment of the company.

In addition, the suit alleges that Belinda Stronach hired unqualified friends at high salaries and submitted fraudulent statements claiming hundreds of thousands of dollars in expenses for herself and her children. The statements allegedly included personal expenses related to parties, vacations, limousine rides and expensive meals that were charged to the company.

Elfriede Stronach, Frank's wife, is a co-plaintiff. Belinda Stronach's children, Nicole and Frank Walker, are co-defendants along with Belinda and Ossip.

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The suit lists 39 demands for relief that include:

-- $250 million (Canadian) in compensation as the result of "unlawful or oppressive conduct."

-- $250 million in damages for "breach of fiduciary duty" in addition to unlawful conspiracy.

-- $20 million in punitive action.


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