A federal appeals court late Tuesday halted Chrysler's sale of the bulk of its assets to Italy's Fiat pending an appeal by a trio of Indiana state pension and construction funds.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit will hear arguments in the case Friday afternoon in New York, according to the Indiana treasurer's office. Chrysler LLC had hoped to close the sale by the end of week, pending regulatory approval.
"We are pleased the Court of Appeals has agreed to hear our arguments," Indiana Treasurer Richard Mourdock said in a statement. "As we have stated from the beginning, Indiana retirees and Indiana taxpayers have suffered losses because of unprecedented and illegal acts of the federal government."
Chrysler has maintained that the deal with Fiat Group SpA is its only hope of avoiding selling itself off piece by piece. If the sale doesn't close by June 15, Fiat has the option of pulling out of the deal.
But the funds, which include the Indiana State Police Pension Fund, the Indiana Teacher's Retirement Fund, and the state's Major Moves Construction Fund, claimed that the deal as structured unfairly favors the interests of the company's unsecured stakeholders ahead of those of secured debtholders such as themselves.