Former New Zealand gambling manager admits theft

Cini is to be sentenced on June. 12
Cini is to be sentenced on June. 12

Mark Cini has admitted stealing NZ$182,761 in grants.

New Zealand.- The Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) has reported a Christchurch man named Mark Cini, aged 59, has pleaded guilty to 39 charges related to the theft of NZ$182,761.64 (US$110,625) in class 4 grant funds derived from gambling machines.

Cini was the venue manager of class 4 gambling venue Robbies Riccarton at the time of the offence and was also involved in cricket-related sports bodies. He was convicted under the Crimes Act 1961, including charges of forgery, theft by a person in a special relationship, and dishonestly using a document. Cini is to be sentenced on June 12.

DIA investigators discovered that between 2018 to 2020, Cini submitted false quotes and instructed his employees to sign grant applications on behalf of different recipients to obtain grant funding.

Vicki Scott, director gambling, DIA, said: “Within the gambling system, this offending is of the worst kind. It is deliberate, motivated by greed, and deprives legitimate community organisations of grant funding. “This behaviour is clearly prohibited and is an attack on the integrity of the gambling system.

“Where appropriate, we will continue to use the full extent of the law to hold those who engage in this kind of dishonest conduct within the gambling system accountable.”

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