An obese conman who was accused by a judge of using his ill health to subvert the court process has died.
The man, who still has interim name suppression, died in Waikato Hospital on Wednesday night.
He had more than 150 dishonesty convictions in New Zealand and Australia, but failed to appear in the Hamilton District Court five times since April to face further fraud charges.
His lawyer, Michael Meyrick, told the court the Waikato man suffered from "catastrophically bad health", including diabetes and other obesity complications.
But in June, Judge David Ruth agreed that the accused was using his bad health to avoid court and echoed the views of a previous judge who had called the 57-year-old an "incorrigible con-artist".
Judge Ruth said the man had an alarming history, almost all of which related to fraud, and he accepted a police application opposing bail on grounds that he could still be offending.
The defendant was due back in court on August 24 on one charge of using a document for pecuniary advantage, eight charges of obtaining by deception and one of being a manager or director of a company while prohibited.
In the latest charges, he was accused of defrauding would-be clients of more than $100,000 in alleged scams police say took place between July last year and January, but Mr Meyrick said his client was adamant the charges were without substance.
Judge Ruth accepted the man was being treated in hospital for various conditions but issued a warrant for arrest should he fail to attend court voluntarily once discharged.
Five days later, when the man fronted up to court, he collapsed before being able to appear.
On release from hospital, he was taken into custody and this week was readmitted to hospital, where he died.
Mr Meyrick said the family may look into the circumstances of the man's move from hospital into custody.By Natalie Akoorie Email Natalie