17 Jun 2014

SCF defence case opening delayed

12:09 pm on 17 June 2014

The opening of the defence case of the three former directors of South Canterbury Finance accused of fraud has been delayed for a day by legal wrangling.

From left: Edward Sullivan, Robert White and Lachie McLeod.

From left: Edward Sullivan, Robert White and Lachie McLeod. Photo: Mytchall Bransgrove

After 12 weeks of Crown evidence, the defence of the former chief executive Lachie McLeod, along with directors Edward Sullivan and Robert White, who are defending 18 fraud related charges following the 2008 collapse of the company, was due to open at the High Court in Timaru on Tuesday.

However, legal argument over the admissibility of evidence from a witness formerly involved in South Canterbury Finance took up much of the day.

Justice Heath ruled the witness will be called, subject to various protection orders, and will begin his evidence on Monday.

Pip Hall QC, who represents Edward Sullivan, will begin the defence case on Wednesday afternoon and will call two witnesses.

Jonathan Eaton QC, who represents Lachie McLeod, said he will call two or three witnesses, who have given written statements, to be read later this week.