17 Dec 2019

Fraudster David Ross' 'remorse ... won't bring closure', say victims

7:16 am on 17 December 2019

A victim of New Zealand's largest Ponzi scheme says he wants to believe David Ross is sorry, but knows he is a prolific liar.

David Ross.

David Ross Photo: RNZ

Ross, the former director of failed company Ross Asset Management, was jailed in November 2013 for 10 years and 10 months, with a minimum non-parole period of half that time.

The Ponzi scheme he had been operating collapsed in 2012, owing 450 investors $115 million.

Ross was granted parole yesterday, and is due to be released in February after the board found he displayed "deep and sincere remorse".

Ross Asset Management Investors group spokesperson, Bruce Tichbon said Ross was an appalling liar so really hoped his apology is genuine.

"His remorse will help a little bit, but it won't bring closure to people who worked for 40 years to save up a retirement nest egg to have it stolen by this man."

"The guy is really the most amazing liar and fraudster I think, but we have to accept that ultimately he has to be released, he has to be able to come back into the community again, we can't see that anyone will give him money to invest again in the future but that could potentially happen."

Mr Tichbon lost $415,000 to Ross Asset Management and has only been able to recover about 19.5 percent of that money back.

Ross Asset Management Investors Group spokesperson Bruce Tichbon.

Ross Asset Management Investors Group spokesperson Bruce Tichbon. Photo: RNZ

In the parole board's decision it said Ross acknowledged that his offending had a very material impact on his victims and said he was deeply sorry that he was unable to put things right.

The board said Ross should be given the opportunity for treatment, and counselling should focus on his past manipulative behaviour and his willingness to deceive.

It said he posed a low risk of re-offending, and there would be a number of strict conditions that Ross would have to adhere to upon his release in February.

He was prohibited from holding any advisory or governance roles with any business, trust, company or other entity unless he had been granted written approval from a probation officer.

Ross was not to engage in any employment, which included voluntary and unpaid work, and was barred from providing business advice and managing financial accounts with any person.

He was also barred from contacting any of the victims of his offending directly or indirectly.

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