Relatives of a local carpet-layer who stole from the family business say they feel betrayed, Queenstown District Court has heard.
Brent Andrew John McKay, 41, stole more than $4000 from his brother-in-law’s Mosgiel-based firm in January so he could pay some bills.
Before being sentenced to 250 hours’ community work and four months’ community detention on two charges of theft yesterday, the court heard that McKay’s actions have caused “irreparable damage” within the family.
Judge Dominic Flatley read out part of a victim impact statement written by McKay’s brother-in-law and owner of Layiton Flooring, Bob Crosbie.
“We were, and still are, devastated. We have been lied to and stolen from. We feel like we have been used and abused,” the statement said.
“We feel betrayed. The fact that Brent is family makes the situation so much worse.”
Judge Flatley added: “That indicates the breach of trust that is present here. It indicates the devious nature in which you behaved.”
McKay had been working as the company’s Queenstown branch manager since September 2010.
The Lake Hayes Estate man took money for two separate carpet-laying jobs that was meant to go to Layiton Flooring and deposited it into personal bank accounts.
In January this year, McKay hand-wrote a quote for $936 to carpet a Lumsden woman’s home. He completed the job over two days and received a cheque worth $900 for “Lay It On” and $36 in cash.
On January 17, McKay took the cheque to Westpac bank in Frankton and opened up a new business account named “Lay It On”, and deposited the cheque. Once the cheque was cleared Mckay withdrew all the money in two separate cash transactions.
A few days later, McKay deposited $663 cash into Layiton Flooring Ltd’s business bank account, keeping $276 for himself.
Also that month, McKay was asked to re-carpet floors at Adventure Queenstown Hostel and Chalet. McKay provided a quote of $4124.15 which was accepted by the hostel.
A week after laying the carpet, McKay sent an email to the hostel manager saying he’d discounted the price to $3237.20. He asked for the money to be paid into his personal bank account.
Crosbie fired McKay in February. A few days later, the manager of Adventure Queenstown Hostel and Chalet deposited the money into McKay’s account. McKay made no effort to give the money to Layiton Flooring.
In March, McKay became aware that police were investigating the matter so he arranged for $1720 to be paid to Carpet Court Queenstown for the supply of carpet to the hostel. About the same time McKay paid $722 to his former employer.
“In explanation the defendant stated that he needed money to pay some urgent bills,” prosecuting sergeant Ian Collin told the court when McKay pleaded guilty last month.
High school student gets second chance
A Wakatipu High pupil who threatened to kill a local police officer has been sentenced to 12 months’ supervision.
Ashley Paul Coles, 17, assaulted and threatened to kill sergeant Steve Watt while getting arrested for being unlawfully in a yard on September 1.
Coles’ lawyer Phena Byrne told the court that Coles verbally apologised to Watt, who was present in court yesterday.
Byrne says Coles needs help with his alcohol problems and other family issues that he is grappling with.
“He totally accepts his behaviour was wholly inappropriate,” she says.
Judge Flatley told Coles he didn’t want to sentence him to community work because he could be influenced by others on the scheme.
“You have got your future ahead of you. You need to learn, you need to change your thinking.”
Judge Flatley also ordered a psychological assessment, drug and alcohol counselling and help for “any other issues”.
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