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Fraud study links gambling and fraud

[16.10.06]

Fraud study links gambling and fraud

“Gambling is increasingly a major motivator for serious fraud,” says John Stansfield, CEO of the Problem Gambling Foundation of New Zealand (PGF).

“Since the last KPMG Fraud Survey in 2004, there has been a 60% increase in the amount of New Zealand fraud that was motivated by gambling. The 2004 study found that gambling was the highest motivator for serious fraud, and I would expect that trend to continue in 2006,” says Mr Stansfield.

“We are hearing of more and more fraud in New Zealand organizations. Studies such as the 2006 KPMG Fraud Survey and the 2006 BDO Not-For-Profit Fraud Survey both identify gambling as a motivator for fraud, which shows just how much gambling costs New Zealand organizations,” he says.

“We believe that the figures really are higher than reported, as a significant number of gamblers are not caught, so the crimes don’t get discovered. In other cases, the crime is discovered but the link to gambling wasn’t,” says Stansfield.

“Gambling crime is growing at an alarming rate, and gambling is the reason for the most serious property fraud in a number of cases.”

Some recent examples of fraud in New Zealand organizations include: Catering manager stole $6872 from his employer for gambling (Christchurch, September 2006)

Man defrauded friend out of $101,000 by lying so that he could gamble (Hamilton, July 2006)

WINZ case manager fraudulently accessed $102,475 by inventing a client so that he could gamble the money (Christchurch, July 2006) Man with a history of fraud, defrauded second employer of $5761 for gambling (Christchurch, July 2006) Woman committed benefit fraud of $11,000 for gambling (Nelson, July 2006)

Woman committed benefit fraud of $13,000 for gambling (Ashburton, April 2006) Lawyer defrauded client of $699,942 for lifestyle and gambling (Christchurch, April 2006) Trusted employee from a car hire company stole $16,793 from his employer for his gambling problem (October 2005)

Machinery operator stole $231,399 from his employer for gambling (October, 2005) Board member stole $22,382 from a trust for a gambling problem (August, 2005) Manager of a Sumner restaurant stole more that $16,000 for a gambling problem (August, 2005) Key accounts manager stole $265,944 for gambling (June, 2005)

Christchurch bank teller embezzled $380,800 for gambling on pokies (April, 2005) Maori business woman stole $186,000 to gamble at Christchurch Casino (March, 2005) Hong Kong used car salesman swindled $275,000 from Chinese students (March 2005)

Salesman conned customers out of $27,750 to feed a gambling problem (September, 2004) Woman stole $3000 from her employer and faked a burglary to fund her gambling problem (March, 2004) Woman stole $10,000 from her employer to fund her husband’s gambling problem (March, 2004)

Woman stole $9012 from her employer to fund a gambling problem (August, 2003) Christchurch lawyer stole $1.78million by fraud and forgery to gamble at Christchurch Casino (March, 2003)

Each year over 5000 New Zealanders are convicted of gambling-related crimes. On a steadily increasing basis, there are reports of fraud, money-laundering and theft for people to fund their gambling problems.

“It is often not realised that problem gambling affects more than the just the individual. Research indicates that at least seven people are affected by one person’s gambling. This includes husbands, wives, partners, children, wider family members, employers and employees.”

“However, it is not all doom and gloom. PGF provides free and confidential services to anyone with – or affected by problem gambling. All you have to do is call us on 0800 664 262.”

ENDS


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