$9.2m mortgage fraud case
The Serious Fraud Office has laid 48 charges under the Crimes Act against a group of people allegedly involved in a complex series of mortgage frauds involving $9.2 million.
At the centre of the charges is 44-year-old Eli Devoy, who now goes by the name of Ellie Stone.
The SFO alleges Devoy conducted a series of property sales and purchases between July 2007 and December 2010 which deceived various banks into approving mortgage applications, which were based on false documents or information supplied to the banks.
Other defendants are six individuals related to, or associated with, Devoy who are alleged to have participated in the scheme.
The accused appeared before the court in Auckland today without entering pleas and will appear again on June 13.
"Financial crime in lending markets increases the cost of credit to all borrowers and has a direct impact on economic growth," acting SFO chief executive Simon McArley said.
"SFO is keen to work with lenders to reduce offending in this area and augment the deterrent effects of SFO's prosecution functions with improved lending practices and procedures." A complaint about Devoy and her associates was first received by the SFO in November 2011 and an investigation launched the following month.
The others charged are Mehrdad Ghorbani, aka Mohammad Ghorbani Sarsangi , Mehran Ghorbani, aka Massoud Ghorbani or Ken Williams  , Nasrin Kardani , Mehrzad Ghorbani, aka Mehdi Ghorbani, Hassan Salarpour , and Javad Toraby .