Damian Chesterman, Robt Jones'' />
The property empire of Sir Bob Jones is chasing more rent owed by the last surviving arm of Mark Bryers' business.
Damian Chesterman, Robt Jones' barrister of Bankside Chambers, has filed an application for Auckland rent due from late last year to early next year.
On April 26 and 27, the High Court in Wellington is due to proceed with a defended hearing examining how much money Northern Crest Investments has to pay for Level 12 of Qantas House at 191 Queen St.
Robt Jones claims it will be due hundreds of thousands of dollars but Northern Crest is defending its position, having vacated the offices long ago.
The premises are still empty and Robt Jones cannot lease the floor.
Robt Jones said Northern Crest took out a six-year lease on the floor on August 25, 2005. That started on March 7, 2005 and the term does not finish until March 6 next year.
Northern Crest also leased 22 carparks in the block. In a separate deal, Blue Chip leased level 20 of Qantas House and the courts have found the two businesses were associates.
Last week, David Rankin, investment manager for Robt Jones Holdings, said $300,000 back rent from Northern Crest had been paid for level 12.
Northern Crest was formerly Blue Chip Financial Solutions which Bryers co-founded. He was Northern Crest's executive chairman and executive director and retains a big shareholding in the business.
Northern Crest, ASX-listed until it was suspended for failing to pay fees, has challenged Robt Jones' action.
Neil Bell, a former Northern Crest employee who also worked at Blue Chip, filed an affidavit saying Northern Crest feared Robt Jones might re-enter the office "without notice and seize crucial Northern Crest records", according to a High Court at Wellington decision.
Evidence was also presented that Bryers claimed he had tried to strike a deal with Robt Jones director Greg Loveridge to sub-let carparks in Qantas House. But Bryers claimed Loveridge had said no. Loveridge challenged this in his affidavit, saying he never refused any request from Northern Crest to sub-let carparks.
When Blue Chip went into liquidation, Robt Jones entered level 20 and arranged for Allied Pickfords to package up all contents and place them in secure storage in the Qantas House basement.
This apparently included some records belonging to Northern Crest, the courts found.
Bell was provided with access to the records if Northern Crest paid $10,000 for the Allied Pickfords moving costs.
Bell said there were large volumes of boxes and records and he could not retrieve all Northern Crest's records but it had paid the $10,000.
Northern Crest attempted to counterclaim or set off the Robt Jones claim, saying it had suffered damages after being denied access to documents removed by Robt Jones from Level 20, premises with a separate lease and rented to a separate Blue Chip company.
But Justice Warwick Gendall rejected this, saying it lacked credibility.