I never understand these stories, but I guess gambling addiction is a very big and serious issue for a select few. But when is enough enough and you walk away?
Richard Arthur Watson, 58m an accountant with the Ross Group since 1978 stole $5.4 million from his employers over a 10 year period managed to lose it all making over $50 million worth of bets at the casino before finally being caught.
Eventually as head accountant, his $300,000 annual salary plus bonuses was not enough for the New Zealander who plundered $5.4 million over 150 fraudulent transfers before blowing the money mostly gambling at SkyCity casino’s VIP lounge.
However, Richard Arthur Watson’s ongoing crime was later discovered after the Ross Group ordered an audit of its accounts resulting in the head accountant’s confession.
The family run business have thus far only received $260,000 in repayments from Watson.
Presenting his case, Defence lawyer Shane Tait claimed his client was remorseful and had a “clear gambling addiction.”
However, Judge Charles Blackie remained unconvinced by the argument and gave Watson a six year sentence for what he described as a “gross, prolonged breach of trust.”
Summing up the case, the judge explained: “You had a compulsion for gambling but it was something you had the ability to control, but you chose not to. In my view the compulsion to gamble was an issue but greed was another.”