MR No. 2015 – 43
18 September 2015
A former director of OPI Pacific Finance, Craig Robert White, has today pleaded guilty to misleading investors in a prosecution taken by the Financial Markets Authority (FMA).
Mr White pleaded guilty to two charges under the Securities Act 1978 including distributing an advertisement in 2007 which included untrue statements, and signing a registered prospectus in 2007 that included untrue statements.
The FMA’s acting director of enforcement and investigations, Paul O’Neil, said the guilty plea shows that Mr White has accepted responsibility for his failure to fulfil his disclosure obligations to investors.
Mr White will be sentenced in the Auckland High Court on Wednesday 23 September.
In August this year, Mark Lawrence Lacy and Jason Robert Duncan Maywald, also directors of OPI Pacific Finance, pleaded guilty to the same charges. They were sentenced today to 200 hours community work each, to be carried out in New Zealand, and ordered to pay AUD $100,000 in reparation to be paid to the company’s receivers.
One remaining director, David Mark Anderson, is scheduled to proceed to trial on 5 October 2015.
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OPI Pacific Finance provided finance to entities involved in commercial property investments and developments. It went into receivership in September 2009 and was put into liquidation in November 2011.
More than 10,000 investors were owed approximately NZD $247 million. As at July 2015, OPI investors had been repaid 30.23 cents in the dollar.