A former financial advisor was "robbing Peter to pay Paul" in a ponzi-style scheme and used investor funds to pay her credit card bill and daughter's school fees, the Crown alleges.
Jacqui Bradley is on trial in the Auckland District Court and faces 75 Crimes Act charges after she allegedly fleeced around $15 million from 28 investors.
She has pleaded not guilty.
Crown lawyer Kristy McDonald QC told the jury in her opening arguments today that Bradley used the funds contrary to the terms agreed to by investors.
Some of these investors considered themselves "close personal friends" of the accused, she said.
While many were told they were buying into New Zealand Government Stock or putting money with Macquarie Bank, McDonald said this never happened.
Instead, the accused was using the funds to pay back other sets of investors, and in some instances to pay her credit card bill and daughter's school fees, the Crown alleged.
"The Crown's position is that none of the funds were invested at all," McDonald said.
Bradley was "robbing Peter to pay Paul" in a ponzi-style operation, the Crown lawyer argued.
Although Bradley ran a financial advisory business together with her now-dead husband, the Crown said she knew what she was doing
"You can be confident that Mrs Bradley knew exactly what was going on," McDonald said.
"She cannot possibly have thought what she was doing was right," she said.
Mike Bradley was to face charges with his wife but he died last year, weeks before the trial was originally due to start.
The Companies Office began investigating the Bradleys in 2009 after four firms jointly run by the pair went into receivership.
Although receivers sold the couple's Remuera home for more than $4 million in 2010, investors have been told they are unlikely to recover much.By Hamish Fletcher @hamishfletcher Email Hamish