March 15, 2013
Scammed lawyer struck off roll
A Rotorua lawyer who was jailed for misappropriating money that he then lost to internet scammers has been disbarred.
The New Zealand Lawyers and Conveyancers Disciplinary Tribunal says John David Rangitauira admitted that his convictions reflected on his fitness to practice.
He agreed to be struck off the roll of barristers and solicitors.
In November 2011, Mr Rangitauira was sentenced to four and a half years in jail for taking more than $300,000 from a Māori trust he chaired and did legal work for.
He sent the money, along with $506,000 borrowed from Westpac Bank, to scammers who claimed the funds were needed to release a $27 million inheritance, from which his firm would be paid $6 million.
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