25 Jul 2018

Tuku Morgan welcomes Māori King office's serious fraud inquiry

From Morning Report, 7:20 am on 25 July 2018

A Serious Fraud Office investigation in to the office of the Māori King is being welcomed by his former spokesperson. The SFO raided King Tūheitia's headquarters on Tuesday, and reportedly removed documents and hard drives. It follows a months-long investigation by the Charities Service of the Ururangi Trust which receives $1.6 million annually from Waikato Tainui to support the Māori King in his role. It has now wrapped up its investigation which reportedly focused on one member of the trust and claims money was mis-spent, including on a stomach stapling operation. The trust was warned by the Charities Service in 2015 about other questionable spending on hair and beauty purchases, homewares, jewellery and travel. The King's former spokesperson, Tukoroirangi Morgan, who has never been a member of the trust, told Te Manu Korihi reporter John Boynton he was glad matters were now coming to a head.