Iwi leader Roger Pikia steps down from some roles as Serious Fraud Office inquiry continues

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Last updated 05:00, February 12 2017

An iwi leader has stepped down from prominent roles dishing out Treaty settlement money while the Serious Fraud Office investigates his financial activities.

Stuff revealed in January that Roger Pikia, a business consultant, adviser to the Maori King and chair of two Te Arawa iwi trusts, was being investigated by the SFO.

The inquiry came after it was revealed that $775,000 belonging to the Te Arawa River Iwi Trust (Tarit), which Pikia chairs, had been invested in Ka Ora Ltd, a health food company of which he is a director and previous shareholder.

And it was revealed that the small Tahu Whaoa iwi, which Pikia also chairs, had covered the $2.6 million in debts of a failing Tongan forestry company and had agreed to pay a further $3.5m in return for control of the firm.

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