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Lombard Finance directors acted with honesty and integrity, their lawyer says

Posted in Property

The directors of Lombard Finance & Investments acted with honesty and integrity, using the best information they had available to them, according to the defence counsel.

Counsel for Doug Graham and Lawrence Bryant, Paul Davison QC who previously successfully defended Feltex directors against criminal charges brought by the Registrar of Companies, told the High Court in Wellington his clients acted honestly and with integrity while directors of the failed lender, and acted on the best advice available to them when signing off on offer documents.

In his summing up, Davison said the Crown’s case was working backwards, using the benefit of hindsight, and that there was nothing in front of the lender’s board at the time that dictated they should have impaired any of Lombard Finance’s major loans or disclose what the prosecution calls the deteriorating state of the property market.

“Sir Douglas and Mr Bryant are men of the utmost integrity and honesty, and there is evidence of taking action to make sure there was nothing wrong or overstated, exaggerated or could be termed in a manner misleading in any way,” Davison told the court.

The Crown contends Lombard Finance directors Graham, Bill Jeffries, Lawrence Bryant and Michael Reeves made untrue statements in a 2007 prospectus, investment statement and advertising material.

The Securities Commission, and its replacement the Financial Markets Authority, didn’t act until after Lombard Finance was put into receivership, and worked its way back towards its current case, Davison said. The court has to consider what was available to the board at the time, and it is up to the Crown to prove the guilt of the accused beyond reasonable doubt.

Even if acquitted, Davison said his clients’ reputations have been irretrievably damaged by the accusation.

Davison said the board trusted its management, which had a history of success, but when it emerged the lender faced a short-fall on the sale of the Bayswater property development, Graham immediately took steps to familiarise himself with the loan and subsequently requested a review of the firm’s entire loan book.

Bayswater differed from the other major loans, in that it should have been recognised as impaired, Davison said.

Management and external parties thought Lombard Finance would be able to make full recoveries from the rest of the major loans, and that the advances didn’t need to be impaired, he said.

Davison will continue his closing argument today, with counsel for co-accused Jeffries and Reeves set down for the next two days.

The case is continuing, heard by Judge Robert Dobson, sitting alone.

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9 Comments

There are no better examples

There are no better examples then public figures: Bob Parker on TVone – just listen to that BS !!!
http://tvnz.co.nz/national-news/chch-council-crumbles-councillors-wage-war-4701110
 
 …and then the BS from Marryatt
http://www.3news.co.nz/Tony-Marryatt-and-the-68000-pay-rise/tabid/367/articleID/241354/Default.aspx
 
….and the corrupt and greedy still have support from part of the public - telling more beautiful, soothing words -  lying again.
 
Looking into current developments on many fronts – the world will never recover again, simply because among the powerful in societies ethic and moral requirements and standards don’t prevail
 

At least the finance industry

At least the finance industry rent-seekers got their takings from voluntary investors. The bureaucratic empires get theirs from compulsory taxation.
I love what the lawyer Cactus Kate blogs about people who ask her to please sue their finance company for them, for "dishonesty" or "criminal" behaviour. Cactus Kate tells them, "you just don't want to admit you are a SUCKER who invested his money with people just as STUPID as YOU"...........
I concur heartily. The whole GFC is 1% about dishonesty and 99% about mass stupidity, especially regarding "property as wealth".

Adam Smith had it sorted in

Adam Smith had it sorted in 1776 re the role of "dwelling houses" - see what he says about dwelling houses and wealth:
http://www.macrobusiness.com.au/2012/01/pascometer-burns-red-on-property...
I don't know what the hang OUR institutions are teaching our elites. A load of sustainababble, probably.

Utmost integrity ...

Utmost integrity ... sure!
 
If integrity is purporting to know what you are doing, signing things you fail to understand and accepting money from persons without integrity so that they can borrow your integrity to sell their product ...
 
Lock'em all away.  Together with Richard Long and Pine Tree Meads.  Ignorance is no excuse. 
 
Solid as, I'd say ... been round for generations ...
 
(room for just one more sales slogan)
 
... yeah right!

Well, he would say that,

Well, he would say that, wouldn't he?

Can you do cartoons as well?

Can you do cartoons as well? If not then perhaps find someone to convert your talents into the visual form, a compliment to you if you like.

Whether they have maintained

Whether they have maintained their integrity, I think only those finance directors will know. Of course, they could have been made the scapegoats by the higher ups when they found that the company was in worse shape than originally thought. Their hope lies with the lawyers and how they can turn the situation around, because it seems that the evidence is against them.
Derek