Woman admits payroll theft

A former payroll worker has admitted stealing more than a quarter of a million dollars from her employer to fund an expensive gambling addiction.

Gladys Ruth Campbell, 64, of Feilding, looked after the accounts of Lower Hutt firm Aztech Engineering.

She started working there in 2009 as a temporary staff member, before gaining a permanent position in 2010.

Between March that year and December last year she took $261,205 by falsifying entries into the firm's MYOB computer accounting program. That included holiday pay and sick leave overpayments of $6802.

In Palmerston North District Court yesterday Campbell pleaded guilty to a charge of dishonestly accessing a computer and was remanded on bail for sentencing next year.

A police summary says her offending began just weeks after she began permanently working at Aztech.

"She would create fictitious company names similar to the company's actual providers but set up her own bank account as the receiver," the summary said.

Police spoke to Campbell on October 7 and she admitted her offending.

"[She] stated she wasn't aware of the final figure and used the money to supplement a gambling addiction of $600 to $700 a day," the summary says.

Campbell has no previous convictions.

Defence lawyer Peter Brosnahan said his client had health and psychiatric problems.

There was no point in ordering a reparation report as Campbell couldn't pay the money back, he said.

Manawatu Standard