Woman who stole $66k from employers avoids second jail term
FORMER Goondiwindi woman Karen Michelle Hadley narrowly avoided being sent back to prison after she admitted to stealing more than $66,000 from various employers in the border town.
Hadley, 33, had stolen more than $170,000 from various employers over a three-year period from 2007.
However, she had served 12 months of a 17-month jail term imposed by the court in her native New South Wales after admitting to the theft of $105,000 from a business during the relevent offending period.
Upon her release from prison, she had been charged with a further $66,116 worth of similar offences having stolen from three separate businesses including the Goondiwindi B&S committee of which she had been treasurer.
Crown prosecutor Kathleen Millican told Toowoomba District Court on each occasion Hadley had been employed in a position of trust with access to the particular company's banking and in a position to "cover her tracks".
When confronted by one employer about cheque book anomalies, Hadley had said sorry and that it was the only time she had done such a thing, failing to tell the employer she had already siphoned off $33,000 from that company, Ms Millican said.
Hadley had for some time been declared bankrupt and had no capacity to pay back the loss, Ms Millican submitted.
Hadley pleaded guilty to stealing as a servant and associated offences.
Her barrister Scott Lynch argued that had his client been sentenced for all the offences when sentenced in New South Wales, she may not necessarily have served any more actual time in prison.
On the grounds of sentence totality, Mr Lynch asked that any jail term imposed by the court be suspended in full.
During the time of offending, Hadley had been in a relationship with a man who contributed little financially and she had spent much of the money on a house and "buying his loyalty and affection", he said.
She was now single and back living, working and studying in New South Wales, Mr Lynch told the court.
Judge Sarah Bradley sentenced Hadley to 25 months jail but suspended the whole term immediately on condition she not re-offend within three years.