Wednesday April 2,2014 : ONLINE GAMBLING THE DOWNFALL OF K.P.M.G. DIRECTOR?
Management consultant stands accused of making GBP 45,000 in false expenses claims.
A fondness for online sports betting on the Betfair website proved to be a contributing factor in the downfall of British KPMG director and management consultant Brian Chapman this week when he appeared at the Old Bailey charged with making false expenses claims to the value of GBP 45,000.
The court heard that although he was earning a gross annual salary of more than GBP 100,000, Chapman was GBP 90,000 in debt and allegedly lost an average of GBP 330 a week through online gambling.
He was struggling to maintain payments towards his mortgage and 12 credit cards at the time of the fraud, prosecutors claimed.
This led to him allegedly double or even triple-claimed the same expenses, including flights, hotels and mobile phone bills, over a period of five years before an internal KPMG investigation exposed the irregularities.
Prosecutor Jane Osborne said that Chapman was a consultant working for KPMG at director level in the financial services sector. Travelling was frequently part of that role and he would legitimately incur substantial expenses which had to be claimed back.
“Those expenses were not quite as substantial as those that he claimed for and over the course of a five-year period there were almost GBP 45,000 of expenses that he claimed that were not in fact owed to him.
“He did that deliberately, no doubt because at the time his personal financial circumstances were characterised by mounting and very substantial debt," the prosecutor told the court, adding that although Chapman received a net salary of around GBP 5,500 a month virtually the whole amount was spent paying his mortgage, his gambling and the monthly credit card minimum payment.
Chapman has pleaded not guilty and is defending the action, The Scotsman newspaper reports.