Rio Tinto Plc must face a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) lawsuit over the company's valuation of coal assets in Mozambique, a federal judge ruled.

U.S. authorities in October 2017 filed fraud charges against London-based Rio Tinto, former CEO Tom Albanese, and former CFO Guy Elliott, claiming they had inflated the value of assets Rio Tinto acquired in 2011 for $3.7 billion.

U.S. District Judge Analisa Torres on Monday denied Rio Tinto's request to dismiss the case, saying the SEC had adequately claimed that statements about the unit's valuation—which it said were made after Albanese and Elliott learned of “severe adverse developments”—didn't square with the information the company had at the time.

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