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BOP woman gets home detention for $150k fraud

File photo.

A woman who received $150,000 in secret commissions while employed at a tertiary college has been sentenced to nine months home detention.

Former Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi employee Katherine Tuhakaraina, 60, was sentenced in Tauranga District Court on one representative charge of ‘Receiving secret reward for procuring contracts’ brought by the Serious Fraud Office.

The defendant received the kickbacks from Koa Consultants who delivered an education course to the wānanga, says the Serious Fraud Office, which brought charges against the woman.

Tuhakaraina had recommended her employer award the company the contract.

The defendant made the recommendation knowing she would get a share of Koa Consultants’ profits if it got the work.

Her employer was unaware of this agreement or that the defendant had any personal interest in the awarding of work to Koa Consultants.

“Corruption is a priority for the SFO. It disproportionately affects the most vulnerable in our society, and in this case undermined the good work of the wānanga and its dedicated employees," says director of the SFO, Julie Read.

"Ms Tuhakaraina deceived her employer to obtain funds provided to the education sector from the Crown. Her offending was criminal, corrupt and a gross breach of trust.”

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6 Comments
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What about the Bribery?

Posted on 12-05-2020 22:26 | By Dollie

Was the company prosecuted for giving her the bribe?

Judiciary

Posted on 11-05-2020 16:55 | By

Sad to say it, but NZ Judiciary is best regarded as Third World.

It does seem light....

Posted on 07-05-2020 08:47 | By groutby

...and without any mention of any form of repayment whatsoever....I guess maybe this is supposed to be born by the taxpayer once again, seems to me that any organisation given government ’grants’ is likely to have, shall we say ’loose’ financial accountability.

REALLY?

Posted on 07-05-2020 08:13 | By

Her punishment is to stay home. They say crime pays. I wonder if she gets the benefit while comfortably living at home on some of the luxuries of her ill-gotten gains and getting her groceries and pizza home delivered. All the luxuries of L4. What a joke . . . No wait . . . Jokes are funny . . . this is RIDICULOUS. Justice system, yeah right.

So is home detention a punishment?

Posted on 06-05-2020 15:49 | By Kancho

So she will be in lockdown just like we are now? Over two months served here , inconvenient but hardly a punishment. Probably will have people looking after her and visitors a d a the comforts of home . Mmm

Shameful.

Posted on 06-05-2020 15:19 | By morepork

""Ms Tuhakaraina deceived her employer to obtain funds provided to the education sector from the Crown. Her offending was criminal, corrupt and a gross breach of trust.” So, why is she not in jail? What happened to the money? If she is allowed to keep it, how is justice being served? There are many good charities in Tauranga who could benefit from $100K+...