Alleged fraudster remanded
A Hawera woman at the centre of an online debate over allegedly banking a fraudulent $15 million cheque has been remanded without plea.
Kiri Campbell, 32, is charged with five counts of using a document to gain a pecuniary advantage.
She appeared before Judge Allan Roberts at the Hawera police station yesterday after a group of supporters temporarily shut down the court house.
Campbell's plight has gained traction over the past few days on social media and has been associated with the Maori sovereignty movement.
According to websites supporting her, Campbell deposited $15m "of her own value" into a TSB Bank account as a way of "revealing the fraud of the current banking and monetary system".
Hawera police prosecutor Steve Hickey told the Taranaki Daily News that Campbell was remanded in custody by consent until she could get legal advice before her bail hearing.
Mr Hickey said she would appear in the New Plymouth District Court at another date, but would not elaborate further.
Earlier in the day, about 40 people packed the public gallery, shutting down proceedings.
A man waving the Maori flag of the United Tribes would not stop when asked, saying: "I do not consent to what you say, sir," whenever he was approached by a court officer. Judge Roberts refused to begin until the flag was removed.
Campbell was subsequently whisked away by police and could be heard screaming as she was bundled into a police car.
Media were also asked to leave the area for their "own safety" shortly after 10am when police began to move the group on.
Outside the court, Campbell's representative, Larni Healey, said they do not recognise the authority of the court.
Campbell was also an administrator of The One People Aotearoa-New Zealand Facebook page, which is linked to a "sister site" called Mortgage Terminators.
Taranaki Daily News