A Brunswick Rd tyre dump that is worrying local residents belongs to a man linked to a Californian cold case murder.

John Gordon Abbott, who was until recently living in Waverley, is now in Japan, according to reports.

Abbott's notoriety was outlined in an Investigate magazine story in March last year.

It detailed a criminal history of jail time, armed robbery and the attempted murder of police in 1976.


Abbott is also said to be a prime suspect in the 1980 murder of arts student Valerie McDonald in San Francisco.

It is alleged she was kept captive for 10 days before her death.

Abbott was convicted of the attempted murder of two police officers in 1980 and sentenced to seven years in a Canadian jail.

He was released in 1988 and fled to New Zealand, Investigate said.

The Chronicle photographed Abbott in 2009 shortly after he bought the old Waverley Town Hall. He said at the time he was a farmer.

Wanganui District Council records show Abbott owns other Wanganui property.

Since 1980 or earlier (council records start in that year), he has owned 15 Ikitara Rd and 45 Nile St.

In 2004 he bought 208 Victoria Ave, 52 Mosston Rd in 2005; in 2006 he bought an unnumbered property in Pehi St and in 2008 he bought 77 Brunswick Rd, where tyres and fill are being dumped.

Abbott also owns the old Waverley Post Office, the Okotoku weigh station, the old Patea Courthouse and a couple of farms in the Waverley area.

Abbott paid cash for all the properties, including the Waverley Town Hall.

The Wanganui District Council sends rates demands for Abbott's Wanganui those properties to an address in Japan, from A1Murder suspect now in Japan

and rates payments are up to date.

Waverley historian Laraine Sole told the Chronicle yesterday Abbott was an enigma.

She last had email contact with him a week ago but said she did not know where he was now.

Ms Sole last saw him before he left for Australia and subsequently returned to Japan, a country he was familiar with. She said she and Abbott shared an interest in old buildings.

It is believed Abbott had sought residency in New Zealand.