A man in Australia faces possible jail time for stealing money that he then used to gamble. It could potentially end with him sharing the same space with the people from whom he stole, as he was the GM of a correctional facility and the money belonged to the inmates.
Brenton Williams, a former general manager of a correctional facility in Adelaide, allegedly stole more than AUD100,000 (US$71,030) from prisoners. The money is part of the funds inmates have to turn in when they report to the facility.
Williams allegedly stole the money a little at a time across a four-month period last year, according to Australia’s ABC News. He’s now on trial for the theft, with his lawyer trying to paint his client as a “desperate” and “depressed” man.
Road To Ruin
Williams was, at the time, in management with Serco, a global company that provides, among other services, private correctional facility management. Before COVID-19 hit, the company shipped him off to Perth, but he left his family behind.
This was one of the catalysts that led him down the dark tunnel to thievery, despite his annual salary of AUD250,000 (US$177,575). His lawyer told the court that this caused “huge stress” on him mentally.
Alongside that position, he had been managing a bar that didn’t weather the COVID-19 storm well. It found itself under a pile of debt, but Williams didn’t want to throw in the towel.
Instead, he thought he could climb out of the hole at the expense of others. Williams insisted to the court that he had always intended to return the money he gambled. However, that was only part of the reported AUD1-million (US$710,300) habit he had.
Despite the lawyer’s attempt to paint his client as a victim of circumstance who wasn’t thinking clearly, the truth draws the lines differently. Williams is a man who apparently can’t control his urges and already sought treatment for gambling addiction in 2002 and 2003.
Williams will have to return to a courtroom in March for sentencing and prosecutors apparently don’t want to tread lightly. He has been a part of the system he once helped oversee since his arrest, and prosecutors don’t believe he deserves to receive home detention.
Hiding Behind The Badge
Williams isn’t the only person in a position of law and order to violate the rules he promised to uphold. Halfway around the globe in the UK, a now former police officer threw his life away as he tried to hide behind his badge.
Joshua McGrory corrupted himself and the Humberside Police Force when he decided to assist an illegal online gambling ring. The 28-year-old opened a bank account and online gaming accounts for the gang in exchange for money. He assisted, all the time knowing that illegal activity was taking place.
Instead of taking a bite out of crime, McGrory allowed it to happen for a year and a half. The gang finally fell apart in 2020, after which his involvement surfaced. He resigned the following year.
However, McGrory apparently won’t spend time behind bars. His punishment, according to ITV, consists of a lifetime ban from any police force in the UK.
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