The former helicopter pilot convicted in 2008 of stealing large quantities of greenstone from the Cascade Plateau could lose his $1.8 million Haast farm under the Courts and Criminal Matters Act, which came into force yesterday.
The new act allows application to be made to the High Court to force asset sales to recoup court imposed reparation and fines.
David Saxton and his son Morgan, who died in a helicopter crash in 2007, were both convicted of stealing snowflake pounamu belonging to Ngai Tahu, and were ordered to pay $300,000 in reparation; none of it has been paid.
Ministry of Justice general manager collections Bryre Patchett said today court staff were continuing to explore the enforcement options available to recover the unpaid reparation.
"One of the options being considered is a sale order to force the sale of Mr Saxton's farm. The Ministry of Justice does not
have a timeframe for when enforcement will occur because this is a decision for the court," Mr Patchett said.
Court staff had considered seizing property and making compulsory deductions from Saxton's income.
"However, these options were not appropriate so a charging order was placed over his Haast property, meaning it cannot be sold unless the full amount of reparation is paid."
Some of the stolen pounamu was returned to Ngai Tahu.By Viv Logie of of the Greymouth Star