An Auckland woman has been given community work and supervision for her part in a million dollar advertising scam.
Terran Elizabeth Dow, 47, who now lives in Wellington, pleaded guilty to five representative charges of being a party to dishonestly using a document between May 2010 and December 2012.
She was arrested as part of the Serious Fraud Office investigation Operation Edit into selling advertising in magazines that were either never printed, or the number of magazines that were printed and circulated was grossly exaggerated.
Wellington District Court judge Susan Thomas said Dow assisted the main offender who was bankrupt and unable to do things like open bank accounts and act as director of companies.
She said while Dow did not know the full extent of the offending she did know it was dishonest. Dow was not charged with being part of the criminal group or anything to do with the advertising.
Companies were sent fake invoices for the fictitious advertising.
Dow opened the accounts, administered them, received the money and provided the main offender with eftpos cards.
Money totalling $182,802 was received, of which she received $28,754.
The judge said there was no chance of reparation.
Judge Thomas said the victim companies were often small enterprises that provided services to the community like a group in Rotorua that offered day activities for elderly people and ended up thousands out of pocket.
She said Dow believed the main offender would rescue her, especially from a tax debt, so helped him.
The judge sentenced Dow to 220 hours community work and a year of supervision.
The others charged, Anthony John Hendon, Noelene Kay Banton, James Stephen Burns, and Johannes Hendrik Maria Middledorp have been committed for trial.
- © Fairfax NZ News