Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


Sentence handed down in SFO mortgage fraud prosecution

2 April 2014

Sentence handed down in SFO mortgage fraud prosecution

Ramni Kumar (46) was sentenced in the Auckland District Court today to 12 months’ Home Detention and 250 hours of Community Work for the role she played in a $3.9 million mortgage fraud scheme.

In January this year, Ms Kumar pleaded guilty to 10 charges of dishonestly using a document. The charges related to 10 property transactions undertaken during the second half of 2010. The charges were brought by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO).

Ms Kumar used false documentation to obtain mortgage finance for low income families who would not otherwise have been able to obtain finance. Ms Kumar benefited by arranging for her (and allegedly, her associate’s) contacts to make the initial purchase of the properties and then on-sell them to the mortgage recipients, thus generating a profit.

SFO Director, Julie Read said, “The SFO is pleased to have brought the prosecution of Ms Kumar to a successful conclusion. The manipulation of mortgage lending systems is a serious form of fraud. Banks need to be able to rely on documents submitted in support of mortgage applications to ensure that costs are contained for all borrowers.”

Ms Kumar’s associate Vicki Ravana Letele (33) still faces 11 charges of dishonestly using a document and will go to trial on 18 August.

Background to investigation

Crimes Act Offences

Section 228 Dishonestly taking or using document
Every one is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 7 years who, with intent to obtain any property, service, pecuniary advantage, or valuable consideration,—
(a) dishonestly and without claim of right, takes or obtains any document; or
(b) dishonestly and without claim of right, uses or attempts to use any document.

About the SFO
The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) was established in 1990 under the Serious Fraud Office Act in response to the collapse of financial markets in New Zealand at that time.

The SFO’s role is the detection, investigation and prosecution of serious or complex financial crime. The SFO’s focus is on investigating and prosecuting criminal cases that will have a real effect on:

• business and investor confidence in our financial markets and economy
• public confidence in our justice system and public service
• New Zealand’s international business reputation.

The SFO operates three investigative teams:
• Evaluation and Intelligence;
• Financial Markets and Corporate Fraud; and
• Fraud and Corruption.

The SFO operates under two sets of investigative powers.

Part I of the SFO Act provides that it may act where the Director “has reason to suspect that an investigation into the affairs of any person may disclose serious or complex fraud.”

Part II of the SFO Act provides the SFO with more extensive powers where: “…the Director has reasonable grounds to believe that an offence involving serious or complex fraud may have been committed…”

The SFO’s Annual Report 2013 sets out its achievements for the past year, while the Statement of Intent 2013-2016 sets out the SFO’s three year strategic goals and performance standards. Both are available online at: www.sfo.govt.nz

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Statistics: Business Research And Development Up 29 Percent

Computer services and machinery manufacturing firms led the way in an almost 30 percent lift in business spending on research and development (R&D) in 2016, Stats NZ said today. Businesses spent $1.6 billion on R&D in 2016, up $356 million (29 percent) from 2014. More>>

ALSO:

China Shopping: NZ-China FTA Upgrade Agreed Among Slew Of New Deals

New Zealand Prime Minister Bill English and China Premier Li Keqiang signed off a series of cooperation deals spanning trade, customs, travel and climate change and confirmed commencement of official talks on an upgrade to the nine-year old free-trade agreement between the two countries. More>>

ALSO:

Media: TVNZ Flags Job Cuts To Arrest Profit Decline

Chief executive Kevin Kenrick said the changes were aimed at creating "a sustainable future video content business for TVNZ in an ever-changing media market." More>>

ALSO:

Reserve Bank: Wheeler Keeps OCR At 1.75%

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate unchanged at 1.75 percent, as expected, and reiterated his view that the benchmark rate doesn't need shifting for the foreseeable future. More>>

ALSO:

Trade Plans: Prime Minister's Speech To International Business Forum

"The work to improve public services, build infrastructure, and solve social problems is possible only because we have enjoyed sustained, solid economic growth. A big reason for that is the Government’s consistent agenda of economic reform, and our determination to open up more opportunities for trade with the world." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news