Shaun Keenan has been sentenced to three years and eight months’ in prison for swindling nearly $500,000 from his hapū.
The sentence was handed down in the New Plymouth District Court this afternoon.
Keenan was a former senior sergeant in the New Zealand Police. After retiring from the police, he became the first chief executive of the Ngāti Te Whiti Whenua Tōpū Trust.
He held the position frome 2012 to 2017. The court heard the offending took place during this time.
At sentencing a number of hapū and Te Ātiawa iwi members delivered emotional victim impact statements.
Some were permitted to deliver their victim statements to the disgraced iwi leader.
The court heard that a multi-million dollar marae building project has been abandoned due to Keenan’s offending.
Although the hapū is seeking full reparation of $486,045.71, the court heard that Keenan intends to file for bankruptcy.
However, the judge has imposed a reparation payment of $75,000.