A bookkeeper from Edmonton confessed to stealing $126,000 from his employer to feed his online sports betting addiction.
Amandeep Aujla, aged 31, pleaded guilty in front of the Provincial Court and said he used the money he stole from his employer to bet on sports in Canada
bet on sports in Canada. Under the state’s laws this qualifies as theft over $5,000 and was punished accordingly, with a six-month sentence followed by two years probation.
According to reports by the local media, Aujla was a bookkeeper working for Raydon Rentals, a company that rents out heavy equipment. Between January 2012 and March 2013, the employee falsified records and got 69 refunds paid to his own benefit.
Judge Kirk MacDonald ruling said that it was aggravating how Aujla breached his employer’s trust by stealing a large amount of money through a sophisticated operation.
Counseling for problem gambling
MacDonald agreed to give Aujla a lower than usual sentence because he “confessed spontaneously” and because he gave the money back to his employer.
Court heard that Aujla has taken counselling for his gambling addiction and has not gambled since the confession, but MacDonald ordered that he continue taking counselling while on probation. As well, he must perform 75 hours of community service.
Sports betting is big in Canada and the state takes its role in preventing addiction very seriously. Canadian gambling laws restrict local players to parlay bets alone, but a number of foreign-based online sportsbooks are still available.