A former Ministry of Transport manager is back in New Zealand and has appeared in court on dishonesty charges.

The Ministry of Transport last month said Jo Harrison had been stood down over allegations of fraud.

Harrison, at that time, was out of New Zealand and was believed to be in Canada.

The Serious Fraud Office said today that Harrison was arrested at Auckland International Airport on Friday and charged with three counts of dishonestly taking or using a document.

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She appeared in the Manukau District Court that same day and did not enter a plea, the SFO said.

Harrison worked as a manager at the Ministry of Transport from April 2011 until this year.

An internal investigation found that suspicious payments had been made to various entities and the matter was referred to the SFO.

It is alleged that the Ministry of Transport paid approximately $726,000 to entities associated with Harrison, the SFO said this afternoon.