More jail time for Williams in final Five Star sentencing

Neill Williams, a key manager of failed Five Star Consumer Finance, will spend longer in jail after appearing in the Auckland High Court this morning for final sentencing in the long-running case.

The 78-year-old is currently serving three years, seven months’ imprisonment on charges previously laid by the Financial Markets Authority. Today’s sentencing on charges laid by the Serious Fraud Office increases the time in jail by one year and five months.

Five Star Finance and subsidiary, Five Star Consumer Finance, went into receivership in 2007 owing $54 million to investors.

Williams had a role in approximately $43 million of related party lending that occurred between 2003 and 2007 in breach of the company’s obligation under its trust deed, the SFO said.

Directors Nicholas Kirk and Marcus MacDonald received sentences in December 2010 of two years and eight months’ imprisonment, and two years and three months’ imprisonment respectively, and Anthony Bowden was sentenced to nine months’ home detention and 100 hours’ community work.

The court heard that while Williams was not a director he was the mastermind behind the related party transactions.


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