Judge Warns Harbinger Not To Keep Her Informed Via Newspaper

Jun 4 2014 | 9:56am ET

If Harbinger Capital Partners does wind up suing the Federal Communications Commission for failing to approve its wireless internet venture, it might want to give the judge overseeing its bankruptcy a heads up.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Shelley Chapman called an emergency hearing in the case after reading last week that Harbinger had sent a letter to the FCC demanding “immediate, positive action” on LightSquared’s proposed network, which the agency has denied due to concerns about interference with global positioning systems. The letter is believed to be a prelude to a lawsuit should the FCC fail to approve LightSquared’s plans.

Accordng to Debtwire, Chapman made clear she doesn’t like learning about such things “in the New York Post or The Wall Street Journal” before closing the hearing to the public.

Chapman last week ordered LightSquared and its creditors, led by Dish Network Chairman Charles Ergen, into mediation after the two sides failed to reach a compromise. The judge rejected LightSquared’s restructuring proposal, backed by Fortress Investment Group, as unfair to Ergen. Chapman separately ordered some of Ergen’s $1 billion in LightSquared bonds to be subordinated, finding that he ignored loan covenants barring competitors from LightSquared’s capital structure.

The mediation is to be overseen by Chapman’s colleague, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Robert Drain.

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