Businessman on tax charges can be named

Suppression has lapsed on the name of Christchurch businessman Hayden George Jones who has admitted tax offences totalling $402,441.

The 43-year-old pleaded guilty to seven representative charges as his Christchurch District Court trial was due to begin last week, and he has been remanded on bail for sentencing on September 14.

Judge Stephen O’Driscoll refused to continue his interim name suppression last week, but allowed 10 days for him to tell his clients about his convictions and to decide whether a name suppression appeal would be taken to the High Court.

The deadline for that appeal to be filed was midday today. No appeal papers were filed with the High Court registry and Jones’ lawyer Jonathan Eaton QC confirmed that suppression had lapsed.

Jones ran various bars and breweries around Christchurch – companies which the Inland Revenue Department has listed in its summary of the offending.

The companies were Matson’s Brewery NZ Ltd, Swiggers South Brighton Ltd, NZH3 Ltd, Swiggers Hoon Hay Ltd, Matson’s BWS Ltd, The Pier Limited, and the Hibernian Hotel Ltd.

Jones says on a website that that he comes “from a family background in real estate and finance”.

Jones pleaded guilty to charges referring to the seven companies now in liquidation, admitting that he aided and abetted the companies to apply tax deductions totalling $402,441 for purposes other than payments to the tax deparment.

Inland Revenue Department Senior prosecutor Paul Saunders said Jones was a director and joint shareholder of each of the companies, along with another person, either in his own name or through a family trust.

The companies ran businesses around Christchurch during the period of offending between December 2010 and June 2014.

Each of the companies was required to account to the Commissioner of Inland Revenue for tax deductions made from employees’ wages and for other deductions. These included PAYE, Kiwisaver employee and employer contributions, child support deductions, student loan deductions, and superannuation contributions.

Jones was the person responsible for filing the PAYE returns and had the ability to make the payments. He said in a telephone conversation with a tax department officer that he was fully aware of his obligations. He said he had previous experience as an employer and was fully confident in his obligations as an employer.

He later told the department that “things had got out of hand since the Christchurch earthquake”.

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