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US judge rejects SEC bid to expand Rio Tinto fraud lawsuit on Mozambique coal business

A US judge on Wednesday quashed a bid to widen the scope of a civil lawsuit by the US Securities and Exchange Commission that accused miner Rio Tinto of fraud at its Mozambican coal business, a court filing showed.

The SEC filed a complaint against Rio in 2017 with allegations that it had fraudulently concealed the decline in value of the business.

Rio had acquired Riversdale mining for $3.7-billion in 2011, on the premise it would be able to barge 30-million tonnes of coal per year down the Zambezi river, and rail a further 12-million to 15-million tonnes of coal per year to port.