Finance employee plundered funds at gay non-profit organisation
A former financial employee of "Out" — a gay rights non-profit organisation in South Africa — who had earlier been convicted of plundering her employer's funds to go online gambling at un-named internet sites has been ordered by the High Court in Pretoria to repay the organisation, according to reports in the Saturday Citizen newspaper.
Lizette Stassen had earlier pleaded guilty in the Commercial Crimes Court in Pretoria to 174 charges of fraud and theft amounting to R1.829 million (around $ 167,000) whilst she was employed by the gay rights organisation between 2006 and 2010, when she resigned following the exposure of her fraudulent activities.
"Out" claimed that Stassen had misappropriated over R2.6 million ($236,000), by among others, forging cheques and manipulating Out's internet banking facility to transfer funds to herself and others.
She also allegedly used the company credit card to pay for goods and holidays.
Her actions had severe consequences for the organisation, which lost funders, had to cancel projects and retrench workers, the court heard.
Despite her guilty plea, Stassen had declined to repay the missing funds, and Out had no alternative but to seek a High Court order for repayment.
Stassen is currently awaiting sentencing.
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