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ISI chief executive Vance Arkinstall resigns

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Wellington, July 15 NZPA - Vance Arkinstall, who is facing criminal and civil proceedings as a director of collapsed Dominion Finance and North South Finance, has resigned as chief executive of the Investment Savings and Insurance Association (ISI).

The Securities Commission said last week that it has laid criminal charges and issued civil proceedings against Dominion Finance Group and North South Finance directors Arkinstall, Richard Bettle, Terence Butler, Ann Butler, Paul Forsyth and Robert Barry Whale. The directors are expected to fight the charges.

ISI chairman Sean Carroll announced the resignation today. He said Arkinstall would continue working for the ISI until the end of July. The ISI said a week ago that it was working through options and expected to make a decision last Friday or on Monday.

"While we would have preferred to have reached an outcome earlier, we also believed the process should not be rushed given the severity of the situation and the implications on the professional interim career of a longstanding chief executive," Mr Carroll said.

Mr Carroll said Arkinstall was placing the association's credibility and reputation ahead of his own personal circumstances.

He acted in good faith and conducted himself commendably over recent days.

"He will be strenuously defending the charges, but in the interim he believed it would not be in the ISI's best interests to continue as chief executive during court proceedings.

"Vance is aware of the importance of retaining public confidence in the investment, savings and insurance sector and today's decision reflects that."

Grant Graham and Brendon Gibson of KordaMentha were last week appointed as receivers for North South Finance Ltd.

North South Finance had been operating under a moratorium but it was decided that continuing the moratorium under the direction of the directors in the light of the Securities Commission charges was inappropriate.

Covenant managing director Graham Miller acknowledged the constructive role that Bettle and Arkinstall had played in the conduct of the moratorium.

Dominion Finance Group went into receivership on September 9, 2008 owing $176.9 million to 5900 investors who are expected to get less than 25 percent of their investment back.

The commission alleges that Dominion Finance Group's offer documents and advertisements misled investors by misrepresenting the investment risks. North South Finance's offer documents and advertisements are alleged to have misled investors about related party transactions, liquidity and the company's overall financial position.

The criminal charges have a maximum penalty of five years in jail or up to $300,000 of fines. The charges were laid in the District Court at Auckland on June 4.

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