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Airport clerk jailed for $1.8m fraud

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 8/11/2016

An Auckland airport employee who admitted stealing $1.8 million from the business's accounts has been sentenced to more than three years in jail.

Teremoana Kimiangatau worked as an accounts clerk at Auckland International Airport for 18 years, and was fired from her role in February.

The Serious Fraud Office said the 53-year-old siphoned $1.8 million out of the airport's accounts by replacing client account numbers with her own in the company's accounting system.

She pleaded guilty to three representative charges of obtaining by deception.

Sentencing her to three years and two months' jail in the Manukau District Court on Wednesday, Judge John Bergseng said the offending was a serious breach of trust.

SFO director Julie Read said: "In a position to see weaknesses in the system, she chose to take advantage of them rather than to see that they were remedied.

"There is no excuse for that. All employees have a responsibility to ensure that processes are thorough and adhered to."

Ms Read had said a lack of checks and balances allowed Kimiangatau to pass invoices through for authorisation multiple times and let her make changes to client data without being questioned.

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