Judy Lorbek Sentencing
News Reader: A Sunshine Coast woman who went on a spending spree with over 2 million dollars of Commonwealth money has been jailed for 6 years. Outside the court Judy Lorbeck’s lawyer said the mother of three couldn’t resist the temptation when she found the money accidently deposited in her account.
Reporter (Jason Rawlins): Friends and family of Judy Lorbeck were in court today to offer their support after the 47 year old pleaded guilty to stealing. The district court heard Lorbeck contacted Centrelink last year in desperation for an emergency child support payment. Instead of the correct amount the date was inadvertently entered into Centrelink’s system and Lorbeck suddenly found herself more than 2 million dollars richer. Judge Gary Long said she spent the next month paying off her mortgage, gambling, shopping, and travelling, telling the court “there was no suggestion you sought to make any inquiry regarding the funds, but rather you acted quickly to transfer the funds and you were only stopped by police intervention.”
Reporter: Lorbeck’s lawyer says his client could not resist the opportunity to return to the lifestyle she enjoyed during her marriage.
Michael McMillian: “I don’t think she put any thought into where the money had really come from at the time, just it was there, the temptation was too much and she succumbed to it.”
Reporter: Lawyer Michael McMillian says the case highlights deficiencies in how Centrelink controls public money.
Michael McMillian: “All of the other people who contributed to this fund for their spouses or their partners would have had money taken by the department and given to Judy Lorbeck when they gave no permission to the department to do that.”
Reporter: Lorbeck will be eligible for parole after she serves 18 months, she’ll also forfeit her Nambour home.
Centrelink Fraud is a serious offence and often people don't realise that they were making a mistake in the first place. If you've been charged with defrauding Centrelink contact Michael McMillan today.