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Former ACC property manager pleads guilty to corruption charges

Tuesday 15th February 2011

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Former ACC national property manager Malcolm Mason has pleaded guilty to corruption charges brought by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO).

Mason admitted corruptly receiving a payment of $160,000 from a property developer in return for using his position at the ACC to ensure the involvement of a developer known to him in the construction and leasing of a new ACC branch office.

"New Zealand has a hard-earned reputation for very low levels of corruption, and that reputation needs to be protected by constant vigilance by government agencies, along with public cooperation in reporting untoward activities," said SFO chief executive Adam Feeley.

Mason also admitted corruptly receiving a gift to the value of $9,000, in the form of a business class trip to the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix, from a real estate agent in return for involving him in securing a long term lease for another ACC building.

In addition to receiving the payment and gift, Mason also admitted to passing a confidential document listing all Government departmental security officers to an associate involved in the business of installing security systems.

Feeley said there were always lessons to be learned following a criminal investigation, and this case was no exception.

"Part of the SFO’s role is to work closely with other agencies to help prevent future fraud or corruption. We have spoken with a number of parties in this case to advise them of opportunities to help minimise future fraud risks," he said.

Mason was remanded on bail for sentencing on March 15.



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