16 May 2014

Former mayor found guilty of theft

10:14 am on 16 May 2014

A former Central Hawkes Bay mayor has been found guilty of a number of theft-related charges following the collapse of Belgrave Finance.

Hugh Hamilton faced 39 charges brought by the Serious Fraud Office and Financial Markets Authority over his role as a legal adviser to Raymond Schofield, who bought Belgrave Finance in 2005.

Belgrave Finance went into receivership in 2008, owing investors $22 million.

At the High Court at Auckland, Hamilton was found guilty of 14 charges of theft by a person in a special relationship, which has a maximum penalty of seven years in prison.

Hamilton was found not guilty of the other charges of making a false statement as a promoter and making a false statement to a trustee.

He'll be sentenced in July.