By Lloyd Burr
An alleged ‘squatter’ has made himself at home in a multi million-dollar Wellington house and is refusing to leave, despite it being on the market.
The property, formally owned by accountants David Rowley and Barrie Skinner who are now in prison on tax fraud convictions, is due to be sold in a mortgagee sale in the next two weeks.
The tattooed Maori man has erected a Tino Rangatiratanga flag in the window of the McFarlane St home, which overlooks the city and Oriental Bay.
3 News visited the home this morning but the man refused to explain why he is occupying the property.
“I’m sorry but I cannot go any further, as I says, and you’ll have to take it up with my lawyer,” he says.
“At this moment in times, he says 'say nothing until everything is over'. I don’t know enough anyway so it would be pointless.”
The house was purchased by Mr Rowley and Mr Skinner in 2010 for more than $2.1 million.
Estate agent Harcourts are aware of the man but are still looking to sell the house ‘as is, where is’. However, they are not currently offering viewings of the property.
Photos of the property on the Harcourts website, taken a few weeks ago, feature the Tino Rangatiratanga flag in the window.
Civil liberties lawyer Michael Bott says it’s unlikely the occupant has a lawyer, but his actions may not be illegal.
“It depends on how he gained access to the house. If he broke into the house, he has no right to be there,” says Mr Bott.
source: newshub archive