Pianoshop fraud accused hires high-profile lawyer

The director of a Plimmerton piano shop which collapsed with debts of more than $2 million has hired a leading defence lawyer to represent him on fraud charges.

Cameron Phillip Crawford, of Raumati South, made a brief appearance in the Porirua District Court this morning, facing four charges of charges of causing loss by deception.

He was remanded on bail to reappear on July 24.

Crawford was represented in court by Mike Antunovic, who has been involved in a string of high profile cases, including the trial of Scott Watson, who was convicted of the murders of Ben Smart and Olivia Hope.

More recently he defended Iraqi Najeeb Dawood, who murdered his wife in the shed of their Strathmore home in September 2011. He is also defending 17-year-old Manuel Penera Robinson, one of the two men accused of murdering Radio New Zealand journalist Phillip Cottrell Boulcott St in Wellington in December.

Pianoshop Limited was placed in liquidation last month, with a creditors list which included around 200 who claimed to be owed money by Crawford for pianos he had sold on their behalf, or those who say they bought pianos which they had not received.

The first liquidator's report showed that while the company had creditors claiming just under $2.4m, it was estimated that selling the company's assets was expected to raise less than $100,000.

Contact Hamish Rutherford
Business reporter
Email: hamish.rutherford@dompost.co.nz
Twitter: @oneforthedr

The Dominion Post