Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Further charges laid in Belgrave Finance investigation


Media Release

30 November 2012

Further charges laid in Belgrave Finance investigation

An Acacia Bay man, Hugh Edward Staples Hamilton (61) has appeared at the Auckland District Court today charged with fraud following the 2008 collapse of Belgrave Finance Limited (Belgrave).

As a result of a joint prosecution by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) and the Financial Markets Authority (FMA), Mr Hamilton is facing 19 Crimes Act charges of theft by a person in a special relationship, five charges of false statement by promoter, and 11 Companies Act charges of making a false statement to a trustee.

Mr Hamilton, a former barrister and solicitor, was a legal advisor to the other individuals charged in relation to Belgrave. He no longer holds a current practicing certificate.

Following the collapse of Belgrave in 2008, the FMA (then Securities Commission) made initial investigations into the company before referring the matter to the SFO in June 2010. As a result of the SFO investigation, in September 2011 the SFO and FMA commenced a joint prosecution.

The SFO initially laid 23 fraud charges against three people alleging that between June 2005 and March 2008 they used more than $18 million of Belgrave investors’ funds to make related party loans and in doing so they misrepresented to investors how their funds would be used.

The FMA laid an additional 23 charges under the Securities Act and Companies Act.

Acting Chief Executive of the SFO, Simon McArley explained that additional information resulted in further enquiries into Mr Hamilton’s involvement. The SFO and FMA now allege that Mr Hamilton is an accomplice to the substantive fraudulent representations and use of the Belgrave investors’ funds.

“We believe that it is important to explore the culpability of all involved with financial crime. Professional advisors are not exempt and where we believe they have been complicit in offending, we will seek to bring those individuals to account.” Simon McArley said.

FMA Head of Enforcement, Belinda Moffat, said it is alleged that Mr Hamilton was a party to the conduct of the Belgrave directors particularly with respect to related party lending and statements made to the trustee.

"This case highlights the importance of the role that professional advisers have to ensure that Trustees of issuers are provided with accurate information," Ms Moffat said.

On 30 August 2012, Shane Joseph Buckley (44) a former Belgrave Director was sentenced to three years imprisonment after pleading guilty for his role in defrauding the Belgrave investors. Mr Buckley was convicted on 19 charges of theft by person in a special relationship and four charges of false statement by a promoter laid under the Crimes Act by the SFO. Mr Buckley was also convicted on representative charges brought by the FMA under the Securities Act and the Companies Act.

Earlier this year, former Belgrave Finance Director, Stephen Charles Smith (43), and an associate, Raymond Tasman Schofield (49), were committed for trial on similar charges. The trial date is set for 29 April 2013.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: The PM’s Hair-Pulling Power Trip

There have been striking differences between (a) the account of the waitress involved in the hair-pulling incidents, and (b) the account being given by Prime Minister John Key. The version by the waitress is available here and is recommended to anyone yet to read it. By her account, there were multiple instances of hair-pulling and these persisted and persisted long after she had made her annoyance clear to Key – who had also been advised by his wife, and by other café staff that the behavior was evidently not being welcomed. More>>

ALSO:

War: What’s To Commemorate?

Gordon Campbell in Werewolf: Is there anything that can be validly commemorated on this 100th anniversary of Gallipoli? Beyond, that is, a fleeting sense of empathy with the thousands of soldiers killed or wounded on April 25 1915 and in the months thereafter, until the whole thing was finally called off in December 1915. More>>

MORE IN WEREWOLF:

ALSO:

Peter Ellis Case: Minister Declines Request For Commission Of Inquiry

Justice Minister Amy Adams has declined a request from supporters of Peter Ellis for a Commission of Inquiry on the basis that an inquiry cannot be used to determine the liability of any person. More>>

Quakes: New Process For Red Zone Crown Offers

Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee has announced a process to give everyone a say on the Crown offers to owners of vacant, commercial/industrial and uninsured properties in the Residential Red Zone. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Battle Obama Is Waging Over The TPP

For the past two and a half years, this column has been arguing that the fate of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal will hinge on whether US President Barack Obama can win Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) from Congress... Last week, the White House finally, finally unveiled a draft TPA Bill. More>>

ALSO:

Greens: Govt Breaks Free Doctors Visit Promise To Kids

Documents obtained by the Green Party show that the Government decided to fund only 90 percent of doctors’ visits for children suffering from an injury in an attempt trim the cost of the so-called “free” visits. More>>

ALSO:

Other Wars: Extension Of NZDF Commitment In Afghanistan

The New Zealand Defence Force’s commitment of mentors and support staff to the Afghan National Army Officer Academy in Afghanistan has been extended out to December 2016, Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee says. More>>

PM's Press Conference: Auckland Property Prices Increasing "Too Rapidly"

John Key accepted that Auckland property prices 'are going up too rapidly” in a press conference held today in Wellington, however he said that this is not anything new. More>>

ALSO:

Press Conference: ANZAC PMs Concerned About ISIL Bringing The War Home

Prime Minister Key and Prime Minister Abbott spoke of the bond formed between Australia and New Zealand in the “baptism of fire” of Gallipoli. Abbott stated that New Zealand and Australia’s values and interests are linked, and this is reflected in the joint operation in Iraq which will begin shortly. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news