Fraud accused want charges dismissed
Two people charged by the Serious Fraud Office over the $177 million collapse of Dominion Finance are attempting to have the charges against them dismissed.
Lawyers for former Dominion Finance chief executive Paul William Cropp and another person, who has name suppression, argued against the charges in the High Court at Auckland this morning.
The pre-trial hearing was declared "in chambers" by Justice John Priestley who directed media not to report the contents of the hearing or the arguments being proposed.
The pair are charged alongside Dominion's former directors Terence Maxwell Butler and Robert Barry Whale, who are due to stand trial in February next year.
In May all defendants pleaded not guilty and their lawyers indicated they would seek a discharge without conviction.
Dominion collapsed in September 2008 owing 5937 debenture holders nearly $177m.
Receivers presiding over the failed company estimate investors could lose up to 90 per cent of their investment.
The SFO previously stated the four defendants had been charged with a total of 14 Crimes Act counts of theft by a person in a special relationship.
The SFO alleges that between 2004 and 2008 they took part in unauthorised related party lending totalling over $20 million, in breach of the trust deeds entered into by Dominion and associate finance company North South.
In May High Court Justice Brewer said Butler was "extremely ill" with terminal cancer and might not be fit to stand trial if one eventuated.
Butler's lawyer said he had been given between nine and 24 months to live with treatment.
Butler's $7m Remuera mansion is still listed for sale.
- © Fairfax NZ News