A Gore woman has been jailed after defrauding her employer of
nearly half a million dollars.
Janice Raewyn Keenan (54), of Upper Charlton, appeared before
Judge Phil Moran in the Gore District Court for sentencing on
52 charges of dishonestly using a cheque (representing 217
offences), and a representative charge of forgery between
December 9, 2008, and April 8 this year.
She was sentenced to three years' and 10 months' jail.
In August 2007, Keenan began employment with Hokonui Rural
Transport as an office administrator.
The court heard she operated two cheque books, and would
receive customers' cheques that should have gone into the
Instead, she deposited money into the social club account on
217 occasions, before withdrawing it by writing cheques,
forging a second signature, Judge Moran said.
Keenan defrauded the company of $457,639.95, he said.
Counsel Max Withers said it was a ''something of a relief''
for Keenan to be discovered finally.
''She is fortunate, however, that she does still have her
"They do not condone what she has done, and they have made it
quite clear to her,'' Mr Withers said.
Keenan had stolen from an employer who was good to her, and
she admitted she should not have done that.
Keenan had no means to repay the money, he said.
Judge Moran said Keenan had a role where she was trusted with
the company's money.
''They relied upon you implicitly not to rip them off.
Unhappily, their trust was misplaced,'' he said.
''Heaven knows what you did with all this money ... The
amount you defrauded the company was huge.''
Judge Moran said he accepted Keenan was remorseful and had
co-operated with police and owned up to what she had done.
The judge did not order reparation as the prospect of her
repaying the money was ''a forlorn one''.
''This is a dark day for you. This is a dark day for your
family,'' the judge said.