A Christchurch property developer who was bankrupted twice is battling a judge's processes for restricting his ability to manage a business and accrue debt.

David Henderson was bankrupted for the second time in 2010 owing at least $100 million, but the High Court discharged the bankruptcy early this year.

The discharge comes with restrictions, including that Henderson cannot control or manage a business for the next six years, personally guarantee the debts of any person or entity, or be employed by a business controlled by his relatives.

The ruling, published last year, said Henderson's 2010 bankruptcy had been caused by personal guarantees given to cover company and associate's debts, and his inability to pay tax.


The ruling noted Henderson had borrowed extensively from finance companies in the run-up to the global financial crisis claiming personal equity of more than $30m.

The courts found Henderson did not beneficially own the assets underpinning these valuations.

Henderson has now taken the matter higher with an appeal against the process used to set the restrictions against him.

Lawyer Dale Lester appeared for Henderson in the Court of Appeal in Wellington this morning.

He pointed to a section of the discharge judgment, which said "none of the particular aspects of post-bankruptcy conduct alleged against Mr Henderson would, if established, either individually or collectively justify the extending of his bankruptcy beyond six years."

Lester said the judge considered any finding against Henderson's post-bankruptcy behaviour would not affect the restrictions, but he had not taken into account how a finding in Henderson's favour would affect it.

The judges have reserved their decision.