Al­leged fraud­ster to stand trial next year

Matamata Chronicle - - News - By MIKE MATHER

A Mata­mata man ac­cused of de­fraud­ing soft­ware in­vestors of more than $400,000 will stand trial in Fe­bru­ary next year.

Brian Jef­frey Duffell, 53, faces 36 charges re­lat­ing to his com­pany Sil­i­con Rain­bow Ltd, which was used to help mar­ket and pro­mote his in­ter­net mar­ket­ing seminars around New Zealand and Australia.

De­spite be­ing listed in Hamil­ton Dis­trict Court doc­u­ments as a spray painter, it is in an al­leged role as a soft­ware de­vel­oper that he is fac­ing charges. One of the pro­grammes he de­vel­oped has been de­scribed as an of­fice so­lu­tion sys­tem. Duffell would of­fer his prod­ucts in a way that meant the buyer would have ex­clu­sive rights to mar­ket it ex­clu­sively in a cer­tain area of New Zealand, akin to a fran­chise.

Duffell is the sole direc­tor of Sil­i­con, which is based at his Waikato home. His wife is also a share­holder.

Po­lice started to re­ceive com­plaints in 2013 from peo­ple claim­ing that they had paid money to Duffell for the al­leged ‘‘ex­clu­sive rights’’ but soon dis­cov­ered oth­er­wise.

The al­leged of­fend­ing is based on seven com­plainants stat­ing the rights were not ex­clu­sive as the prod­uct had been sold un­der a dif­fer­ent name to an­other party. They also com­plained that he made false rep­re­sen­ta­tions about the prod­uct, and that the prod­uct did not have all the fea­tures that were claimed.

Duffell ap­peared in the Hamil­ton Dis­trict Court on April 2 be­fore Judge David Wil­son, who re­manded him at large un­til the start of his three- week trial start­ing on Fe­bru­ary 1. He also has a callover on Septem­ber 10, from which his ap­pear­ance has been ex­cused.

At an ear­lier ap­pear­ance in Septem­ber last year, Duffell en­tered not guilty pleas to mul­ti­ple charges of us­ing a doc­u­ment, ob­tain­ing by de­cep­tion. He also pleaded guilty to charges of know­ingly be­ing party to a com­pany with in­tent to de­fraud and with in­tent to ob­tain pe­cu­niary ad­van­tage us­ing a Trade Me clas­si­fied in­quiry know­ing it to have been al­tered and us­ing a Quick Of­fice Pro Li­cence Agree­ment for pe­cu­niary ad­van­tage.

The of­fend­ing is al­leged to have oc­curred be­tween Oc­to­ber 1, 2011 and Jan­uary 31, 2014, and to­talled about $420,000.

At his ap­pear­ance in Septem­ber, Duffell was re­manded on bail but or­dered to sur­ren­der his pass­port and not to ap­ply for any travel doc­u­ments.

Photo: FAIR­FAX NZ

Mata­mata man Brian Duffell, pic­tured leav­ing the Hamil­ton Dis­trict Court last Septem­ber, will stand trial in Fe­bru­ary.

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