Kiwi cases raised with fraud-busters

Last updated 17:04 13/02/2013

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White collar criminals have been warned that national borders offer no defence, at the end of the inaugural meeting of international fraud-busters in Auckland.

New Zealand's Serious Fraud Office hosted the inaugural meeting of the Economic Crime Agencies Network, and the meeting was attended by the Federal Bureau of Investigations, the European Anti-Fraud Office and authorities from the United Kingdom and Asia.

SFO acting chief executive Simon McArley said discussions had laid the foundation for better co-operation between agencies.

McArley said he had talked through two local cases with his international colleagues; the convictions of fraudster Loizos Michaels and directors of failed finance company Capital + Merchant Finance.

"We picked the Loizos Michaels case - because it was just so colourful - and the Capital + Merchant case because it was a complex structural fraud, the very opposite," he said.

McArley said other discussions were broadly on how to better share information. "We explored a wide range of tools we can use to work better together and address the increasingly cross border aspects of our cases," he said.

McArley was happy with progress made. "I'm extremely pleased with the way thing went, it was very productive."

The majority of the summit took place behind closed doors, but a public seminar heard how Harry Markopolos had cracked Bernie Madoff's US$65 billion ($77 billion) Ponzi scheme.

The next ECAN meeting will be held in Singapore.

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