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Newcrest to defend latest legal action

Gold miner Newcrest says a new legal claim against licences granted to it by former NSW Labor powerbroker Eddie Obeid is without merit.

Exploration company Gold and Copper Resources (GCR) has filed a claim against both Newcrest and Mr Obeid, challenging the validity of two grants that cover parts of Newcrest's mining operations at Cadia Valley, in central west NSW.

GCR previously had filed four other claims against Newcrest, among other parties, also relating to aspects of the Cadia Valley operations.

Mr Obeid is also a respondent in three of those other claims.

His actions when a NSW minister are currently the subject of an investigation by the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) as it looks at then resources minister Ian MacDonald's 2008 decision to open the Bylong Valley to coal mining and how it benefited Mr Obeid.

"As with the earlier four claims, Newcrest believes that this latest court action is without merit," Newcrest said in a statement on Tuesday.

"The latest GCR claim seeks to challenge the validity of two of the mining leases held by Newcrest for its Cadia Valley operations, which were granted in October 2000 and March 2001, respectively.

"Newcrest will be vigorously defending the action and considers that, as with the other four actions, the matter is not material to Newcrest and will not adversely impact operations at Cadia Valley."