Delay in $15 million fraud trial

The jury trial of former financial adviser Jacqui Bradley has been delayed until tomorrow after the court failed to secure enough jurors.

Judge Christopher Field abandoned the empanelling at the Auckland District Court shortly after lunch when only eight jurors had taken their seats from a pool of 40.

The court will attempt to appoint another jury tomorrow, from an enlarged pool of possibly 60 people.

The trial is scheduled to last for five weeks.

Bradley is facing theft and dishonesty charges on her own after the death of her husband Michael last year. The couple were to face 87 Crimes Act charges relating to the collapse of their financial advisory business B'On Financial Services in December 2009.

Bradley now faces 75 charges, the court heard, 58 of which are for theft by a person in a special relationship. There is one count of theft by a spouse or partner and 16 counts of dishonestly using a document.

B'On was placed into voluntary receivership in December 2009 owing $29 million to 86 investors.

The Serious Fraud Office alleged the Bradleys fleeced clients of millions of dollars in a Ponzi-type scheme but it has laid charges relating to only $15m from 24 investors. It is claimed by the SFO that the couple took investors' money through their company to repay earlier investors and fund their own lifestyle.