Trial for stock agent accused of theft and fraud totalling $2m

A former rural stock agent has pleaded not guilty to allegations of theft and fraud totalling $2million.

John Francis Williams (38) appeared in the Dunedin District Court yesterday, and pleaded not guilty to 17 charges of false accounting, four charges of theft, two charges of obtaining by deception and one charge of causing loss by deception.

The charges were brought by the Serious Fraud Office, which alleged Williams deceived Rural Livestock Ltd and his clients in relation to transactions worth about $2 million.

Williams elected trial by jury, and was remanded on bail to reappear on January 24.