Parole denied again for ponzi-scheme operator David Ross

2019-06-11 04:42:00

One of New Zealand's most high-profile fraudsters has again failed to convince the Parole Board he is fit for release.

David Robert Gilmour Ross, 68, was jailed for his role in a massive $115m Ponzi-scheme fraud in 2013, and became eligible to be considered for release earlier this year

Ross made his first appearance before the Board at Rimutaka Prison in February.

The decision of the board then was not to release him. However, Ross applied for a review of that decision, with another hearing held in June.

In a decision released on Tuesday, the board again declined parole saying Ross showed "little insight" into his offending.

Ross's reluctance to engage with the board came across "evasive and self-serving", the decision read.

He did not want to engage with a psychologist and tried to "control" the assessment process.

"The psychologist recorded that he became defensive when asked questions regarding his offending.

"He was also recorded as questioning the psychologist's ability to assess his offending given the psychologist's disclosure of limited financial expertise."

Ross's lawyer, Michael Bott, told the board his client was reluctant to engage with the psychologist out of fear their findings would be used against him in a civil law suite.

However, Bott conceded "that he was unaware" of any proceedings having been commenced.

Ross showed little insight into his offending, claiming he wanted to provide business advice and mentoring to others - including students.

He told the board his offending occurred after a "mistake was made" and then the business "turned into" a Ponzi scheme.

"He said at the time he was misguided and deluded, and thought he could correct the position," the decision read.

His lack of cooperation with a psychologist and inability to communicate insight into his offending led to the board to decline parole.

"Further, his reluctance to candidly engage with the board on the basis that he was simply preserving his legal rights against unjustified civil actions appeared to us to be incongruent with his expressions of remorse and reflecting limited insight into the position of his 700 victims."

His next appearance will be in December 2019, where he is expected to have undergone a psychological assessment.

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