Despite money not growing on trees, gardening seems to be the most popular way for New Zealand's white collar criminals to while away the hours behind bars.
At least that's the impression Business Insider gets when scrutinising the cases of high-profile fraudsters and other corporate villains who spent time inside.
Gavin Bennett, a Christchurch businessman jailed for a $103 million fraud that funded his lavish jet-setter's lifestyle, is the latest green-fingered miscreant to enjoy pottering among the plants.
Bennett, who surrounded himself with models and actresses and, said a former colleague, "drank Dom Perignon like it was Speight's" before authorities caught up with him, was denied parole this week, so he will have at least a few more months in which to admire the spring growth.
Others of Bennett's ilk have also favoured horticulture, including Capital+Merchant Finance director Wayne Douglas, jailed for fraud and released on parole in May.
Douglas told a parole board he intended to look for that type of work upon his release.
In fact, that parole board said the "dominating aspect of his sojourn in prison has been his discovery of a passion for gardening".
A twice-jailed Kiwi fraudster has again fallen foul of Australian regulators, who this week removed him from the boards of eight companies across the Tasman.
The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) says it is also probing cases in which companies paid Shaun Gregory Morgan an advance fee for capital raising services that were not provided.
Christchurch-born Morgan was jailed in Switzerland during the last decade following a US$30 million ($37.9 million) fraud and was later incarcerated in Utah after he pleaded guilty to running a fake bank and using counterfeit cheques to buy 40 properties.
The 38-year-old, who also goes by the name Shaun Monroe, was deported to New Zealand in 2013, but has since been active in Australia.
In February, ASIC warned the public not to deal with Morgan, and in June it permanently banned him from providing financial services because of his convictions.
And ASIC on Wednesday announced it had removed Morgan from the boards of eight Australian companies, of which he was the sole director.
The regulator also said it was aware that Morgan was continuing to approach Australian companies offering financial services.
"Mr Morgan approaches ASX listed companies who are seeking to raise capital. He then requests an advance fee in exchange for facilitating the raising of capital via the use of corporate bonds," said an ASIC statement, which noted Morgan was not presently living in Australia.
When Morgan was in New Zealand in 2013, he aroused the interest of the police, who warned the public about the need to conduct "due diligence" when he was looking at buying a luxury penthouse apartment in Auckland's Metropolis building.
Anger over FMA's slip
A fumble with documents that the now-defunct Securities Commission got from its regulatory cousins across the Tasman led to a full frontal assault on witnesses and prosecutors by a now-convicted company director.
Business Insider can now report that a judge in May found the Financial Markets Authority used transcripts of two interviews with OPI Pacific director David Anderson "in an unauthorised way".
Anderson, who last week pleaded guilty to misleading investors and will perform community work, was forced to attend ASIC interviews in Australia in 2008 and 2009.
Those attending such interviews must answer all questions levelled at them, but are protected from self-incrimination because their answers cannot be used as evidence during a criminal trial.
ASIC gave transcripts of Anderson's interview to the Securities Commission in 2009, and references to the documents made their way into draft briefs of evidence in the case against him, for misleading investors.
One of the original conditions, when the transcripts were provided to the FMA's predecessor, was that they were not to be used in criminal proceedings.
Anderson this year went on the warpath over the transcripts, claiming the FMA had unlawfully and improperly used the documents in breach of his fundamental trial rights.
He wanted any prosecutor who read the transcripts removed from the case, the evidence of expert evidence excluded from his trial and the documents returned.
While Justice Christian Whata said the transcripts had been used in an unauthorised way, he found there was no evidence of illegality, bad faith or unfairness in the acquisition of the documents, as Anderson had contended.
He decided any evidence produced at trial was not to refer to the transcripts, but declined to remove lawyers from the case or to exclude the entire testimony of some witnesses.
In any event, the argument turned out to be unnecessary, as Anderson capitulated the month before his trial was due to start.
He was the last of four OPI Pacific directors to raise the white flag.
New Zealand employees of professional services firm Grant Thornton won't be entitled to unlimited holidays like their counterparts in the United States.
Grant Thornton, the sixth-biggest accountancy firm in North America, said this week that it would try to attract staff from its rivals by removing a cap on the amount of leave that could be taken.
But any Kiwi Grant Thornton staff making extended holiday plans are facing disappointment - national marketing manager Rachel Head says it is not an international initiative.