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Ex-fugitive denies fraud, sex charges

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 27/06/2016 Cleo Fraser
Paul Bennett © NZ Police Paul Bennett

A New Zealand man deported from Australia to face charges in his home country has denied indecently assaulting a girl as well as fraud amounting to more than half a million dollars.

Paul James Bennett has been charged with 60 offences since he was arrested on his arrival in Christchurch last month.

He appeared briefly in Christchurch District Court via video link on Monday where he pleaded not guilty to all 48 dishonesty, indecency and drug charges as well as 12 civil aviation offences.

The dishonesty charges relate to offending across the country between 2007 and 2015, including that he ripped off a helicopter firm and stole a number of high value items including a $150,000 yacht.

The court heard on Monday that the alleged offending amounted to $567,000.

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