Queenstown mechanic faces fraud rap

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Convicted Queenstown car repair fraudster Karl Abbott (below) is again back before the courts – on more fraud charges. 

Abbott, 53, faces two charges of dishonestly using documents to obtain pecuniary advantage. 

Abbott, who operates as a budget mechanic at 18 Industrial Place offering cut-price car repairs is facing the charges after allegedly ripping off Brazilian man Darcio Fernandez. 

Court papers reveal Abbott allegedly dishonestly used a document against Lumley Insurance on March 30, 2012 and dishonestly used an invoice against Fernandez on April 12 last year. 

An additional charge of perverting the course of justice has also been laid this week, relating to Abbott’s evidence at a Disputes Tribunal hearing, detective Matt Jones says. 

Police want to hear from anyone else who may have a complaint about Abbott. 

“If there’s anyone else who has been affected I invite them to contact me to discuss it and we can assess whether it’s something we can help them with,” Jones says. 

Abbott failed to appear in court on Monday and a warrant was issued for his arrest. He showed up to Queenstown District Court with police on Tuesday and is due to reappear on March 11. 

In April 2005, The Press reported Abbott pleading guilty to two charges of theft for having two $12,000 4WDs stolen to order by a colleague so he could use parts for repairs. He was jailed in 2004 and 2005 for swindles involving car maintenance in Christchurch. 

During the past few years, Mountain Scene has reported several instances of people being unhappy with Abbott’s work. 

In 2010, Abbott’s partner told Mountain Scene complaints about his work were “a set-up” and “vendetta” by other local mechanics – and he was determined to become a respected local businessman. 

Violent assaults 

Police want witnesses after a man was attacked and kicked in the head. 

Officers viewing CCTV saw drunken men taunting passers-by at 3am on Monday. One man, with his girlfriend, answered back to the group and was grabbed by one of the men, dragged to the ground, punched and kicked in the head at Earnslaw Park. 

The Queenstown victim received treatment at Lakes District Hospital for his injuries. 

Officers are also trying to identify the alleged attacker in another vicious assault in which the victim was kicked in the head. 

The Good Samaritan victim, a 33-year-old English bar tender, had gone to the aid of a woman at Tardis Bar, Cow Lane, at 4am last Thursday. 

The alleged attacker, wearing an Adidas T-shirt, New York Yankees baseball cap and believed to be of either Polynesian or Maori descent, had the woman in a headlock and was rifling through her bag. 

When the victim asked if everything was ok, he was pushed back into the toilet, punched in the face and had his head stomped on, sustaining cuts and bruises. CCTV images of the suspect are on scene.co.nz. 

Car trouble 

An Indian driver allegedly caused an accident when he stopped in the middle of a busy road to change gear. 

The 29-year-old tourist in a rental vehicle was rear-ended when he stopped in the 80kmph zone on State Highway 6 outside Lake Hayes Pavilion. 

“He wasn’t familiar with a manual gearbox,” Drader says. 

The Indian was charged with careless driving. 

Police pink stickered a Grand Subaru Legacy that drove through Queenstown CBD with smoke pouring out of its exhaust. 

The beat-up wagon, driven by a Queenstown woman, 32, was first spotted at Ballarat Street roundabout. 

Detective Lisa Watt says: “We had calls from people who thought there was something on fire in the boot, it was that bad.” 

The car was stopped by officers on Frankton Road 

A 27-year-old Queenstowner was charged with dangerous driving, sustained loss of traction and threatening behaviour after allegedly doing burnouts at Terrace Junction. 

Police received several calls about the incident at 3pm on Tuesday. 

A Brazilian driver was taken to Southland Hospital with spinal injuries after crashing his car on the Glenorchy-Paradise Road. 

The 40-year-old, who lives in Queenstown, had five passengers in his vehicle when he crashed at 5.30pm on Saturday. No one else was injured. 

Germans get the runs 

A German tourist allegedly assaulted a police officer and soiled himself after he was caught urinating on The Mall. 

The student and his German friend, both 19, were spotted reliving themselves against a shop window at 2.20am on Saturday. 

“They both ran,” senior constable Sean Drader says. 

“One was caught and resisted. He allegedly hit the officer with a backhand to the eye and also in the process crapped his pants. The other, described as the German Usain Bolt, got away but was later stopped.” 

The first German was charged with offensive behaviour, resisting arrest and assault. The other got a warning. 

Concert arrests 

Police made four arrests as 1500 music fans poured into Gibbston Valley Winery for the Pat Benatar gig. 

A Cromwell man, 42, was charged with two counts of indecent assault after touching several women’s bottoms and kissing them at the gig. 

Two women, aged 41 and 23, were arrested in separate incidents for allegedly being drunk and abusive. 

“The 41-year-old is described as a vulgar woman,” Drader says. “She was extremely drunk, lashing out and abusing people, especially police.” 

Police arrested an Oamaru man, 40, who’d been thrown out and then threatened to smash up his hotel room. He was charged with threatening behaviour likely to cause violence.