Ko Ruapehu te maunga
Ko Taupō-nui-a-tia te awa
Nō Tūranga-nui-a-kiwa ahau
Ko Lloyd tōku whānau
Ko Aaron tōku ingoa
Aaron is a partner in our Litigation and Dispute Resolution division. He represents clients in litigation, investigations, and strategic risk management, across a range of areas. He has particular expertise in trial and appellate advocacy, white collar criminal and regulatory matters, employment law/health and safety, and in sport.
Aaron is an experienced advocate, having represented clients in the District and High Courts, Employment Court, Court of Appeal, and Supreme Court, along with numerous tribunals. He has worked in conjunction with overseas counsel to represent clients in cross-border investigations and before offshore courts and tribunals.
Aaron has significant experience in white-collar criminal and regulatory affairs. He has represented clients in investigations and litigation progressed by a range of regulatory agencies, including the Financial Markets Authority (FMA), New Zealand Customs, the Serious Fraud Office (SFO), and the Commerce Commission. Aaron regularly advises New Zealand corporates on organisational integrity matters, including compliance with domestic and international anti-bribery and corruption legislation. He has acted as part of cross-border legal teams for New Zealand based clients facing prosecutions offshore by the United States Department of Justice (USDOJ) and the London Metropolitan Police (Scotland Yard).
As a member of our broader Employment and Health and Safety team, Aaron assists clients with personal grievances, industrial disputes, contract negotiations and drafting, ACC and health related matters, employee misconduct, and occupational health and safety. He has advised on several significant restructuring and redundancy projects for private and government sector clients. He also advises on immigration, privacy, confidentiality, and data protection obligations.
An internationally recognised sports law expert, Aaron is at the forefront of litigation, and risk management, on a range of integrity related topics in sport. Aaron’s advice covers anti-doping, medical welfare (including concussion), gambling and match-fixing, financial integrity and on-field and off-field conduct.
He is recognised by international legal directories including Chambers Asia-Pacific, Who’s Who Legal, Expert Guides, Best Lawyers, and Doyles. Well regarded by clients for his ability to analyse and strategise complex situations, Aaron has been praised for his “excellent common sense” – Chambers Asia-Pacific 2021. Clients also appreciate his communication skills, with one saying: "He explained the scenarios clearly and in simple terms we could understand. He was easy to talk to about the legal issues and he made it seem like he had time for us" – Chambers Asia-Pacific 2022.
Before joining MinterEllisonRuddWatts, Aaron practised as a barrister with Paul Davison QC (now the Hon. Justice Davison). He has also lectured at the University of Auckland.
Representing various clients in High Court litigation, including viagogo AG, provider of the world’s largest secondary marketplace for event tickets, in High Court litigation taken by the New Zealand Commerce Commission.
Representing New Zealand based individuals and corporates in cross-border regulatory and white collar investigations and litigation, including the following matters.
Advising our corporate clients on a range of organisational integrity matters. Recent advice includes to one of New Zealand’s largest publicly listed entities on its compliance with AB&C laws in New Zealand, the United States, and the United Kingdom. This advice enables the business to manage risk and enter into commercial contracts with offshore entities requiring compliance with AB&C regimes globally.
Providing comprehensive advice to a major trading bank on a range of AML/CFT matters, including an investigation by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand (the banking sectors’ AML/CFT regulator) and potential implications of offshore litigation involving a related entity for AML/CFT breaches in that jurisdiction.
Leading our employment and health safety team’s work for a range of clients, including international lock and accoutrement giant ASSA ABLOY. Headquartered in Sweden, ASSA ABLOY is the world’s most advanced designer and manufacturer of entrance solution systems, with significant operations throughout the Asia-Pacific region (with regional headquarters in Melbourne). Work includes COVID-19 related health and safety and employment advice, day to day employment and health and safety matters, collective bargaining, and responding to alleged grievances and/or other issues arising.
Advising on a number of significant restructuring and redundancy projects for private and government sector clients including the New Zealand arm of a major international manufacturing business, a prominent government department, one of the world’s largest car manufacturers and retailers, and a major sporting body.
Working with leading sports organisations and professionals in New Zealand and Australia, to develop comprehensive methodology for auditing and assessing integrity risk in the sporting environment, providing CEOs and Directors with the tools necessary to ensure effective integrity risk management in sport. This work covers a range of areas, including anti-doping, medical welfare (including concussion), gambling and match-fixing, financial integrity and on-field and off-field conduct.
Advising on integrity and disciplinary proceedings in sport. Considered one of the world’s leading sports lawyers in this area, roles include sitting as Judicial Officer for New Zealand Netball and New Zealand Rugby League, and representing players, teams, and officials in rugby union. Work in rugby union includes advising and representing a number of international rugby unions and teams in domestic competitions in New Zealand and overseas. Also acting for the 10 ‘Tier-2’ nations (including the Pacific Islands and host-nation Japan), and longstanding client Argentina, before the Rugby World Cup 2019 judiciary and on competition matters.
- Associate Member, American Bar Association
- Member, Institute of Directors (New Zealand)
- Member, Auckland Medico-Legal Society
- Member, Transparency International New Zealand
- Member and former executive, Legal Research Foundation Inc
- Appointed, Legal Assistance Panel, Sports Tribunal of New Zealand
- Appointed, Pro-Bono Prosecution Panel, SPCA
Achievements and recognition
- Band 1, Sports Law, Chambers Asia-Pacific
- Tier 1 team, Dispute Resolution, The Legal 500 Asia-Pacific
- Winner, Lawyer of the Year 2023, Sports Law, Best Lawyers
- Recognised, Sports Law, Best Lawyers
- Recognised, Labour and Employment Law, Best Lawyers