A decade on from the death of Michael Erceg, have the liquor magnate's mother and his wife resolved their dispute over his $620 million estate?

Business Insider has been told by staff at the High Court that legal action launched in 2012 by Michael's mother Millie Erceg is no longer live.

The case -- which named Michael's wife Lynette Erceg and lawyer Darryl Gregory as defendants -- was associated with the Independent Liquor founder's estate.

Its details have never surfaced publicly -- not for lack of trying by reporters hoping to get access to the court file.


Erceg mother ordered to pay $27,000 in 'wasted' court costs
Judge denies brother look at Erceg trust documents

Multiple requests were declined, with Justice Raynor Asher last year saying there was a chance that publication "will widen an unfortunate family rift making settlement more difficult".

He also commented that it was a private family dispute and that the principle of open justice had less weight in these sorts of cases before a full hearing.

"Such cases often settle and assertions are made that are later regretted and changed," he said.

Such a settlement may now have been reached, though Business Insider was unable to confirm whether that was the case, either with the parties themselves or their lawyers.

Michael Erceg was piloting his private helicopter to Queenstown with a friend when the craft disappeared off the radar near Raglan in November 2005.

The wreckage was found about two weeks later in dense bush and both men were believed to have died on impact.

Ten years on, family members paid tribute to Erceg in a memorial notice this week, saying he would never be forgotten.


"Our family chain is broken and nothing is the same. We mention your name and speak of you often," they said.

Independent Liquor, which makes ready-mixed alcoholic beverages, was put up for sale after Erceg's death and bought by private equity interests, his widow, and others.

It was then sold in 2011 for $1.5 billion to Japan's Asahi Group Holdings.

Kiro kicked out

A former Financial Markets Authority analyst accused of forging his academic record to get that job had his lease on a Parnell apartment cancelled for not paying his rent.

Police have alleged Benjamin Anthony Kiro forged an academic record from Australian universities and used a false CV to obtain employment at the FMA, which regulates New Zealand's capital markets and has taken action against numerous directors for making false statements in documents.

Kiro, 35, is also alleged to have convinced women he met on online dating sites such as Tinder, and businessmen introduced to him by associates, to invest in companies soon to list on the stock exchange.


Police allege the funds given to him, ranging from $2000 to $120,000 from each of the six complainants, were never invested.

These allegations are associated with 11 forgery or theft charges laid in September against Kiro in the Auckland District Court. Kiro has not yet been required to respond to the charges, and is due back in the Auckland District Court this month.

Business Insider can reveal that the week after the charges were laid against Kiro, the Tenancy Tribunal terminated his lease on the Parnell apartment.

The tribunal adjudicator said rent was at least 21 days in arrears and $1100 damage was done to the garage wall and a door during Kiro's tenancy.

It ordered that an $1800 bond be paid to landlord Alistair Tolmie and that the former tenant pay a further $2750 in rent still owing.

Trifecta of trouble

Some people just can't get a break. Take the case of Mt Maunganui businesswoman Lynley Jayne Hancox, who ran a now-failed Bay of Plenty marketing and advertising agency. Following the receivership of that firm and the court-ordered liquidation of another, the Registrar of Companies banned her from running a business for three and a half years in March 2012.


The following year, Hancox was sentenced to two years and three months jail for dishonestly using documents when selling shares in the marketing agency to friends. She had provided financial statements that were inaccurate and significantly overstated the company's position.

The company was, in fact, insolvent and owed penalties and interest on unpaid GST to Inland Revenue. Hancox had instructed a staff member to delete debt figures from the company's accounts. Although it was "blatant fraud", in the words of the Court of Appeal's Justice Patricia Courtney, it lacked sophistication.

Hancox, now out of prison, is now being chased in the High Court for almost $1.5 million of interest and principal outstanding on a 2006 loan. Hancox has not been defending the proceeding.