23 Sep 2014

Senior figure accused of tax evasion

11:05 am on 23 September 2014

The head of a publicly funded body in Auckland is charged with evading millions of dollars of tax after issuing false invoices to an organisation for which he continues to work.

Suppression orders prevent Radio New Zealand from naming the man, who he works for, or other organisations connected to his employer.


Photo: Photo NZ

The man was charged in April this year by the Inland Revenue Department with 39 instances of not filing income and GST tax returns. The charges carry a maximum five-year jail sentence or a $50,000 fine.

The IRD alleges tax of almost $1.8 million was unpaid, and a further $1.4 million is owed in penalties and interest.

The department argued against the man and the organisation getting continued name suppression, saying the public is entitled to expect that public funds are used with integrity and in a transparent way.

It said that continued suppression would give rise to suggestions of cover-ups and create undeserved political fallout for individuals in charge of public money.

Inland Revenue said businesses and people dealing with the organisation are entitled to know the risks of doing business with a person teetering on bankruptcy.

But the judge accepted arguments put by the defendant and his employer that they would both suffer extreme hardship as a result of being named, and that the defendant would be undermined in his ability to represent that organisation or any other.

The man continues in his role with the organisation involved. He is to appear in court next month.