Securities class action suit filed against food import company G. Willi Food-International Ltd.

A securities class action suit has been filed against an international food importer following allegations that the defendants violated federal securities laws.

The lawsuit against G. Willi Food-International Ltd. was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York on behalf of investors who purchased shares in the company during the class period between April 30, 2014 and Feb. 18, 2016, according to a press release. The securities class action complaint claims that G. Willi and some of its executives violated federal securities laws by failing to inform investors that certain executives, such as Gregory Gurtovoy, may have been involved in fraud and money laundering.

G. Willi supplies Israeli consumers with food products imported into the country. Some of the brands it imports are Del Monte, Zanetti, Sera and Daawat. The foods are kosher certified, and include pasta, rice, oils, bakery products, cheeses, ice creams, canned fruits and vegetables, snacks and breakfast cereals, among other products. The company’s shares trade in NASDAQ.

Israeli authorities arrested Gregory Gurtovoy, the company co-chairman.Israeli authorities arrested Gregory Gurtovoy, the company co-chairman.

Class action claims failure to disclose information on investigation 
The class action filing claims the company made false and misleading statements to investors and/or failed to disclose relevant information to them during the class period. For example, the lawsuit alleges defendants failed to disclose that Gregory Gurtovoy, co-chairman of the company, and others illegally transferred money out of G. Willi. As a result, the class action complaint claims the company’s statements were materially false and misleading during the class period.

Details of investigation are disclosed
On Feb. 17, an article was published in the publication Calcalis that reported G. Willi’s offices had been raided by Israeli authorities. In addition, it was revealed that Gurtovoy was arrested and questioned by Israeli police on charges of fraud and money laundering. The following day trading of the company’s shares in NASDAQ was suspended. The hiatus would last for six weeks, according to Haaretz.

Also on Feb. 18, G. Willi issued a press release detailing the investigation of the company and its executives being conducted by Israeli authorities. Following the announcement, G. Willi securities dropped to $3.75 per share on Feb. 19 from $3.95 per share the day prior, or 5.1 percent.

For more information on this case or other class action litigations, please contact Adam Foulke at 203-987-4949 or info@battea.com.