ANDY JACKSON / STUFF
Lauchlan MacMillan in New Plymouth District Court on drug charges. (archive photo)
More than $ 30,000 was transferred from a Taranaki construction company’s account the day before its collapse, due to $ 1.2 million in creditors, the liquidator said.
Gareth Hoole of Ecovis KGA Chartered Accountants said four transfers involving over $ 30,000 were made from the Fowler Homes Taranaki account for what appeared to be personal expenses on November 8.
They included around $ 3,000 for former owner Lauchlan MacMillan’s own salary.
âIt was literally the day before our appointment,â Hoole said.
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MacMillan had been in Whanganui Prison since he was arrested and charged following a series of coordinated weekend raids by the Taranaki organized crime group targeting the distribution of methamphetamine, a drug of class A. He pleaded not guilty to all counts.
Hoole believes MacMillan accessed his business account from Whanganui Prison after a court appearance via audio-visual link (AVL) – a claim according to the prison impossible.
Hoole said he was shocked to find out that the transactions were made from MacMillan’s corporate account.
âThat was one of my first questions. How the hell could he do that behind bars?
“It is beyond comprehension.”
Prison director Reti Pearse said MacMillan could not have accessed the money inside.
“Prisoners do not have internet access and it is not possible for detainees to access the internet using the equipment in our AVL booths.
“The cabin in which the prisoner was housed contained a television equipped with an AVL behind a reinforced safety screen, which prevents the prisoners from having any direct contact with the equipment.”
He said MacMillan was wanted for smuggling before entering the AVL facility, supervised by staff while in the cabin and immediately escorted to his unit by an officer after his appearance.
Hoole had not expected that MacMillan could have provided his login codes to a third party to access his account.
He was now considering his options for getting the money back, including trying to get it back from MacMillan.
However, the hope of doing so may be in vain.
Its first report showed MacMillan’s company owed $ 1,210,543 to 84 creditors and had assets totaling $ 1,041,442, leaving its books of $ 169,101 in the red, but that number is expected to rise.
The report showed that MacMillan shareholder’s checking account was overdrawn by $ 483,175, but the figure is expected to rise to over $ 600,000 after further investigation, and Hoole confirmed they would seek to recover it. by his side.
On October 22, police cordoned off the offices of Fowler Homes Taranaki at the intersection of State Highway 3 and Corbett Rd Bell Block and seized MacMillan’s luxury sports car, a black 2017 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat. to an address in Fitzroy.
MacMillan, who faces 15 methamphetamine charges and one for driving at dangerous speed, is currently out on bail at a rehabilitation center in Whanganui and is due to reappear in New Plymouth District Court on March 7.