28 Jun 2013

More jail time for finance company pair

9:59 pm on 28 June 2013

Two jailed former directors of failed finance company Capital and Merchant will not appeal against new prison sentences handed down.

Neal Nicholls and Wayne Douglas were sentenced in the High Court in Auckland for breaching the Securities Act.

In September last year, Nicholls and Douglas were jailed for seven-and-a-half years for fraud, after Capital and Merchant went into receivership in November 2007 owing $167 million to investors.

On Friday, Justice Venning sentenced Nicholls to an extra 12 months and Douglas to an additional eight months on the separate Securities Act charges.

The judge said the effects of their actions would be felt by the 7500 investors who lost money for the rest of their lives.

In 2012, Nicholls and Douglas lodged an appeal asking for their fraud convictions and sentences to be overturned, but that was turned down by the Court of Appeal.

Their lawyer, Bruce Gray, said they accept the latest sentences, which will be added to their existing terms.

Belinda Moffat, the Financial Markets Authority's head of enforcement, said the sentences are appropriate and will send a strong warning to others.

"The decision by the court to impose more time on the two directors really does highlight the severity of the offending that took place. And I think for us it also really highlights the grave impact that these cases have on the investing public."

Ms Moffat said the offending is among the worst the authority has seen.