Bankrupt former National MP Trevor Rogers paid his gardener $25 a week to hide a container full of helicopter and workshop equipment that belonged to his company.
TGR Helicorp was manufacturing military and alpine rescue helicopters that were expected to make millions of dollars.
But when the company collapsed in April 2008, assets and intellectual property such as drawings and prototypes disappeared.
TGR's receivers were sceptical and filed proceedings against Mr Rogers and his wife Glenda, both directors and majority shareholders.
Court documents show that Mrs Rogers told their gardener, known only as Leo, to move a shipping container to his property.
It contained Snark military helicopter parts, control gears, engine parts and workshop equipment.
Mrs Rogers ordered this when her home was being searched by court order and was unaware that Leo's property was being searched at the same time.
The Rogers stored the container on Leo's Pokeno land for $25 a week, hidden behind a boarded house and locked down with four padlocks.
"Mrs Rogers came out to him and told him to go to 3 Great South Road to get the container removed," the court documents say. "She gave him her cellphone and told him to phone a man named Tony who could shift the container.
"Leo told Mr Morris [a lawyer] that Mrs Rogers had said to him that she and Mr Rogers were 'in the s**t'."
The Rogers "strenuously" denied possession of any of TGR's assets or designs, and were warned in November by High Court Justice Peter Woodhouse of a prison sentence if they did not produce the assets.
Justice Woodhouse said at the time: "I have come to the conclusion that Mr and Mrs Rogers have continued to defy the court orders, and that they have continued to lie to the court and that they do have possession or control of the IP and other assets of TGR."
As a result, Mr Rogers was jailed on Wednesday for a month for contempt of court.
Investors such as Allan Crafar, former owner of the Crafar farms, paid over $1.57 million to develop the Snark and Alpine Wasp helicopters.
Mrs Rogers and her lawyers refused to speak to the Herald.