Acting Business Editor for the NZ Herald

Four plead not guilty in fraud case

Courts documents list the four's occupations as a manager, a banker, a lawyer and a director. Photo / Nick Reed
Courts documents list the four's occupations as a manager, a banker, a lawyer and a director. Photo / Nick Reed

Four people charged in a mortgage fraud case involving more than $40 million of loans and accusations of kickbacks to bank staff have pleaded not guilty.

The quartet face charges of obtaining by deception over information provided to secure more than $40m of mortgage finance on dozens of Auckland and Hamilton properties.

Three of the quartet have also been charged with breaching the little-used Secret Commissions Act.

Those charges allege that payments, ranging from $5000 to more than $30,000, were paid by and to bank staff in return for approving suspect mortgage applications.

The SFO alleges total kickbacks paid exceeded $500,000, with one accused lawyer alleged to have paid a bank staff member $253,303 over an eight-month period.

Courts documents list the four's occupations as a manager, a banker, a lawyer and a director.

Court orders mean none can be identified, though name suppression is due to lapse next month for some of the defendants.

During a short hearing in the Auckland District Court on Friday, lawyers for the accused entered not guilty pleas.

The case is next due in court in March next year.

- NZ Herald

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