Engineering New Zealand member Jonathan Beau (JB) Hall of Kodiak Consulting has today pleaded guilty to 113 counts of forgery.

Chief Executive Dr Richard Templer says, “This is a very promising development with the admission from Mr Hall that he committed forgery. Engineering New Zealand first raised this with the police as part of our responsibilities to regulate the engineering profession.”

“It’s very rare to see this behaviour in the profession and I know Mr Hall’s actions have caused a lot of stress for property owners and councils around Aotearoa.”

In May, Engineering New Zealand became aware of properties in the central North Island that had been consented based on documents apparently signed by a chartered professional engineer.

Hall appeared to have appropriated the signatures of chartered professional engineers without permission and submitted the designs to councils. The documents included producer statements, designed to give councils the confidence that a design will meet compliance when signed by a chartered professional engineer. A number of designs were subsequently consented.

Hall is an engineering technologist, and not a chartered professional engineer. This means he does not hold the same level of qualifications and expertise as a chartered professional engineer.

The concerns affected over 40 councils nationwide and potentially impacted over 1,000 properties – a scale Templer said was “alarming in its magnitude.”

In November, Hall appeared in the Taupō District Court and today pleaded guilty to 113 counts of forgery.

“I know many owners will still be hurting and there is much for councils to work through,” said Templer. He said Engineering New Zealand has supported councils with guidance to determine the likelihood and types of risk to properties in their region.

“Engineering New Zealand is committed to upholding standards in the interest of public safety,” said Templer. “This includes holding our members to account whenever required, and Hall’s plea today will allow us to resume our disciplinary process.”

Notes to reporters

Engineering New Zealand is New Zealand's professional body for engineers, with some 22,000 members. We represent – and regulate – our members. We also act as the Registration Authority for Chartered Professional Engineers.

Disciplinary Committees can make orders under the Chartered Professional Engineers of New Zealand Act 2002 and Chartered Professional Engineers of New Zealand Rules (No 2) 2002. Where an engineer is a member of Engineering New Zealand as well as a chartered professional engineer, orders can also be made under our membership rules and disciplinary regulations. The maximum fine that can be imposed is $5,000 under the Act or $10,000 under the membership rules.

Engineering New Zealand is initiating a ‘Lessons learned’ series for members to learn from Disciplinary Committee decisions and how to avoid getting themselves into the same or similar situations.

For more information or to arrange an interview, contact Lachlan McKenzie on 021 479 885.