Finally, on 24 December 2010, the Registrar of Companies struck off Computer South Ltd (which had its registered office for over 13 years with Checketts McKay Law, Wanaka), from the Companies Office list of registered companies. ‘Directed’ by plumber Peter Bruce Ibbotson since it was incorporated on 20 March 1997, with Iain Grant Fyfe, a partner in Checketts McKay, as one of its three original shareholders and its solicitor; the company continued to ‘trade’ up to as recently as 20 April 2009 when its Annual Return was filed on line by Fiona Browne, agent for Checketts McKay.
A Serious Fraud Investigation commenced in 2006 into the activities of the real “director” of Computer South Ltd, Michael Andrew Swann, found that it had no assets, no employees and filed no tax returns. It was used by convicted fraudster Swann, a banned company director and bankrupt, as his de facto bank account for laundering millions of dollars he gained by fraud from the tax-payer funded Otago District Health Board, while he was employed there as information technology manager from 2000-2006.
An online record dated 22 September 2006, made by Kathleen Elizabeth Bennett, agent for Checketts McKay, proves that 50% of Computer South shares, personally held by Iain Grant Fyfe, were transferred to Ibbotson, just days before the Otago DHB suspended their employee Michael Andrew Swann and launched their investigation into his financial activities in early October 2006. The Serious Fraud Office launched its own inquiry shortly afterwards.
Working closely with solicitor Iain Grant Fyfe, Swann squirrelled away millions of dollars over six years into Central Otago properties purchased by trusts set up by Checketts McKay in the names of people – presumably known to and nominated by Swann.
Convicted fraudster Michael Andrew Swann, who is currently serving a lengthy jail term for fraud, together with his convicted accomplice Kerry Gray Harford, defrauded the Otago District Health Board of $16.9 Million over six years (2000-2006).
Swann, ran Computer South Ltd as his personal de facto bank account for the laundering of millions of dollars of ‘dirty money’ obtained by fraud from the DHB, despite the fact he held no office in the company and held no shares. As a convicted bankrupt Swann was unable to hold shares in or direct any company.
As a banned director it was unlawful for him to play any significant role in the management and/or financial affairs of the company. The Otago DHB suspended suspended Michael Andrew Swann in early October 2006 for ”gross mismanagement of DHB’s IT procurements including delegation of authority and purchasing policies” then fired him.
For further background reading see:
Swann’s Rolls-Royce lifestyle – the evidence. By Stu Oldham. Fri, 10 Dec 2010
Police seek information on Swann assets. Sat, 25 Sep 2010.