July 2019 trial for wine fraud allegations

A date more than a year ahead has been set for the trial of a North Canterbury wine company and three personnel on charges alleging fraud concerning wine production.

The trial for Waipara-based Southern Boundary Wines Ltd is expected to take at least four weeks.

Justice Gerald Nation set the start date of July 22, 2019, at a pre-trial call-over session in the High Court at Christchurch today.

The charges are against the company, which was placed in liquidation in February, and its directors Scott Charles Berry, 36 of Waipara,  and Andrew Ronald Moore, 43, of Amberley, and an employee, Rebecca Junell Cope, 42, of Waipara.

The charges against the company include making a false statement about the vintage and area of origin of wine in an application for an export eligibility statement, exporting wine that did not comply with export eligibility requirements, failing to deal with grapes, grape juice, and wine from a customer as required, and selling wine that had not been made in accordance with Wine Act requirements.

Broadly similar charges apply to the personnel.

The personnel and the company also face charges of destroying or concealing winemaking records, or attempting to do so. The charges say the records are required to be kept under the Wine Act.

The case will also be scheduled for two days of pre-trial argument, but no date for that has been set.


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