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Progress being made on retirement village fracas

Wednesday, 17 November 2004

Smith: Progress being made on retirement village fracas

United Future justice spokesman Murray Smith says that good progress is being made on the issues concerning the Culverden Retirement village in Mangere, Auckland, that featured on TV3's 20/20 programme on Sunday night

The segment focused on attempts by the village's chief executive, Ian Anderson, to force elderly residents to either pay grossly inflated weekly charges or accept the sale of their homes back to his company for a fraction of their initial purchase price.

Responding to a press release issued by Mr Anderson after the programme, Mr Smith said that he had been involved with the residents' committee and their legal advisers since the beginning of the year and was acutely aware of the problems the residents were having and the high-handed actions and lack of compassion exhibited by Mr Anderson.

Mr Smith said that, as a result of his involvement and that of a statutory supervisor he had brought in to provide assistance and advice to the residents' committee, a letter of complaint had gone to the Securities Commission, who had appointed an inspector.

True to form, Mr Anderson has challenged that appointment in the High Court by way of Judicial Review and the case was currently awaiting a hearing, Mr Smith said.

Subject to the outcome of the inspection, Mr Smith said that the commission could place the village into statutory management to take control of the situation.

Mr Smith said that he was also concerned that the documentation establishing the village might be in breach of the Securities Act's requirements by being an unauthorised Contributory Security. If that was found to be the case, the residents could be entitled to a full refund (without deduction) for all money paid by them.


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