INDEPENDENT NEWS

Couple admit stealing tax-payer funds for lavish lifestyle

Published: Thu 19 Jul 2018 03:50 PM
19 July 2018
A Christchurch couple have pleaded guilty to defrauding a government-funded disability trust of nearly $500,000 on charges brought by the Serious Fraud Office.
Cecilia Ellenbroek (61) and Alfonsus Ellenbroek (64) spent Alpha Support Centre Trust funds on their personal expenses – including extensive international travel and accommodation, meals and entertainment, clothing, cigarettes, alcohol, jewellery and household appliances. They entered their pleas at the Christchurch District Court.
Mrs Ellenbroek pleaded guilty to six counts of ‘Theft by person in special relationship’ and six counts of ‘False accounting’, while her husband, Mr Ellenbroek, pleaded guilty to six counts of ‘Theft by person in special relationship’.
The Christchurch-based disabilities trust was funded by the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Social Development.
SFO Director, Julie Read said, “The Ellenbroeks’ offending took place over a sustained period, was premeditated and the amount of public funds stolen was significant. The funds were allocated for community day care and vocational services for people with intellectual disabilities. The offending came at the expense of some of the most vulnerable members of our society, with whose care the Ellenbroeks were entrusted.”
Mr and Mrs Ellenbroek have been remanded on bail until sentencing on 25 October at the Christchurch District Court.
ENDS

Next in New Zealand politics

Police officer should not have engaged in pursuit
By: Independent Police Conduct Authority
Targets overlook the 174000 children living in worst poverty
By: Child Poverty Action Group
Guidelines needed to avoid risks in government AI use
By: University of Otago
Pike Families welcome opening of drift
By: Pike River Family Reference Group
New design offers certainty for walking and cycling harbor
By: New Zealand Transport Agency
Climate Change Response Bill – James Shaw Speech at reading
By: New Zealand Government
More unsold Kiwibuild houses bought by govt
By: RNZ
IPCA report into fatal fleeing driver crash
By: New Zealand Police
Targets set to help break the cycle of child poverty
By: New Zealand Government
PM breaks another commitment on early intervention
By: New Zealand National Party
Deepfake and the law - Expert Reaction
By: Science Media Centre
Pike River Re-entry
By: New Zealand Government
Long Awaited Re-Entry to Pike River Mine
By: New Zealand First Party
Families witness as Pike River mine re-entry attempt begins
By: RNZ
Pike River re-entry attempt planned for tomorrow: families
By: RNZ
View as: DESKTOP | MOBILEWe're in BETA! Send Feedback © Scoop Media