A former South Canterbury real estate agent has had his licence cancelled after charges against him were found proven by the Real Estate Disciplinary Tribunal.
The charges against Brendan Marshall included false invoicing which he charged to his employer, Hastings McLeod, and one of his clients, Gourmet Tastes.
Marshall did not appear at the hearing in Timaru yesterday, but the tribunal heard from witness Hamish Niles, of Hastings McLeod.
Marshall was employed by Hastings McLeod from late 2011 until earlier this year, when the false invoicing became apparent. He was employed to look after the South Canterbury area and Oamaru, Mr Niles said.
"Then we found some invoices coming through that we decided to investigate further to see what was happening."
One of them was written out to a rugby club.
"That was one of the trigger points, so we started investigating there," Mr Niles said.
Eventually, two lists were established - one of "suspected fraud", totalling $6708, and another of "likely fraud", totalling $5258.
Mr Niles said it was more difficult to determine items of "likely fraud" because there were no receipts and invoices did not correlate with company accounts. In an attempt to determine the amount of fraud, an auditor's report was ordered, costing Hastings McLeod almost $12,000, Mr Niles said.
The company also incurred other costs during its inquiry, he said.
"I haven't totalled it, but obviously it's probably been a couple of weeks worth of work, I imagine, if you total it all up."
Judge Paul Barber said the usual time needed to confer was not needed. "We feel the facts speak for themselves, and on the balance of probability ... that has been met so we find the charges proven."
Marshall's real estate licence was cancelled.
Judge Barber indicated he would look at the level of reparation required.
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