Sunday, June 22, 2008

Filipino-Australian jailed for embezzling A$1.7M

It was on the news that certain Welda Bacolod, 42 years old and a mother of four, is now languishing at the Emu Plains Correctional Centre after District Court Judge Peter Berman found her guilty of embezzling $1.7 million Australian dollars (about 70 million pesos) from the Swiss Hotel. She’s been sentenced to a non-parole period of three years with a head sentence of five years.

Welda as an employee of the sales department in Swiss Hotel was entitled to staff discounts on guest rooms, food and services. She was famous among Filipinos in Australia as they would approach her every time they have business with the hotel. Those Filipinos who sought after her assistance paid directly to her in cash, sometimes the money was deposited in her bank account, but no official receipts have been issued in any occasion. Trusting Welda those Filipinos thought the payments made by them, net of discount from her, were not amiss not until they received a call from the auditor of Swiss Hotel regarding their dealings with Welda.

Reports said that Welda used the money to buy properties like her palatial house in Muabual, Cebu but relatives of her denied all the accusations and stated that she had plenty of debts to deal with.


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