Both Brownlee and Goodfellow are muppets. The worry is both of these muppets are involved in selecting candidates, and running hostile whispering campaigns against party members who don’t fit their blinkered world view.
Cabinet minister Gerry Brownlee is ”deeply embarrassed” at getting caught up in an alleged fraud saga that has dragged in senior business figures and ex-All Black Jonah Lomu.
“I didn’t do my research at all . . . I’m just deeply embarrassed I was anywhere near it,” Brownlee said of his short tenure on the board of NZ Casino Services, a company said to be run by alleged fraudster Loizos Michaels.
He was speaking toÂ FairfaxÂ about a court trial where National Party president Peter Goodfellow was giving evidence in Michaels’ trial. Michaels has pleaded not guilty to 31 counts of fraud involving dozens of investors who lost more than $3 million.
Brownlee became a founding director of NZCS on Goodfellow’s recommendation but resigned after a few weeks.
Goodfellow yesterday told told the Auckland District Court how he extricated himself from a supposed casino venture after concluding that the appearance of an alleged conman claiming connections to Macau billionaires “just wasn’t up to scratch”.
The court heard Goodfellow was left $114,000 out of pocket after lending money in August 2007 to old friend and former Christchurch Casino boss Stephen Lyttelton to invest in Michaels’ schemes.
The loans included $64,000 paid in cash, at Lyttelton’s request, which Goodfellow said was “very unusual”.