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WA gambler jailed for stealing money

AAP logoAAP 6/09/2016

An accountant who stole more than $2.1 million from his employers and gambled it all away has been jailed in Western Australia for six years.

Wayne Peter Lynch, 44, was working as a financial controller in Broome when he transferred the money from McCorry Brown Earthmoving and other companies into his own account in instalments between June 2014 and December 2015.

Lynch pleaded guilty to 119 counts of stealing as a servant, but the WA District Court heard on Tuesday that Lynch had no assets, was unable to repay the money he stole, and was likely to declare bankruptcy.

Judge Alan Troy noted Lynch had a 25-year gambling addiction and was now living in Perth with his elderly parents, who controlled his finances.

He recognised Lynch pleaded guilty but said that did not indicate he was remorseful.

Judge Troy said Lynch's actions were brazen and unsophisticated, adding he was bound to get caught.

"You are a thief on a very large scale,' he said.

Marilyn and Anthony Brown started McCorry Brown Earthmoving in 1989, with several smaller businesses also owned by the family.

Judge Troy said Lynch had grossly betrayed the trust of his employers and it had been devastating to them.

'You know your actions were wrong," he said.

General deterrence was an important factor in sentencing, Judge Troy said.

Lynch must serve at least four years behind bars before he can be eligible for parole.

Outside court, Ms Brown said there was no justice for what Lynch had done and the family was disappointed he had not expressed remorse despite having the opportunity to do so.

She said they hoped he would serve his entire prison sentence.

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