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Fraud Film Festival features Oscar nominated documentary

01 February 2018

The Oscar-nominated documentary Abacus: Small Enough to Jail is one of the leading features at the second New Zealand International Fraud Film Festival.

The event takes place in Auckland on Friday the 2nd and Saturday the 3rd of March.

Chair of the festival, Ian Tuke says they're very excited about the quality of this year’s programme and the calibre of films coming through.

"More than 400 people attended the first festival in November 2016. This year’s event aims to bring both the private and public sector together to help industry and the public raise awareness about the best ways to fight fraud," he says.

The themes for this year’s event at the ASB Waterfront theatre are corruption, technology and dishonesty. The first day will be an industry event by invite only. The second day is a public event, with tickets due to go on sale soon.

Abacus: Small Enough to Jail will play for the public on day 2 of the festival and follows the prosecution of a small New York neighbourhood bank which serves the local Chinese community. Abacus alerted the authorities to the fraudulent behaviour of an employee but then found itself subject to the first US federal bank prosecution since 1991. Director Steve James’ film suggests the bank was targeted because it was small enough to prosecute, compared to those responsible for the sub-prime mortgage collapse in 2007-08.

Other films include All the Queen’s Horses, which examines how the City Controller of an Illinois municipality of just under 16,000 people stole more than US$53 million over twenty years. Banking on Bitcoin looks at the rise of the disruptive cryptocurrency, while Betting on Zero examines a hedge fund boss who took a billion dollar short position against a company he accused of being a pyramid scheme.

Last updated on the 1st February 2018