The chief financial officer of the collapsed Viking Group has been sentenced to six years in jail for crimes a judge labelled as among the worst type of white-collar offences.
Loukia Bariamis, 51, will spend a minimum four years in jail for her part in defrauding the Commonwealth Bank of $33.5 million, but won't begin that term until next year, as she is currently in prison for a separate offence of defrauding of the Australian Taxation Office.
Bariamis pleaded guilty to three charges of obtaining a financial advantage by deception, in that she secured three multimillion-dollar loans from the bank by falsifying documents in her role in the Viking management group in 2009-10.
Bariamis, a mother of two who has struggled with a major depressive disorder and other health problems, cried and wiped her eyes when told by Supreme Court Justice Kevin Bell she would not be eligible for parole until 2018.
When the Viking Group went into liquidation in 2011, the Commonwealth Bank lost a total of $48 million, and the $33.5 million Bariamis secured could not be retrieved.
Justice Bell said Bariamis built a rapport with the bank through honest dealings before she breached that trust.
Justice Bell acknowledged prison life would weigh heavily on Bariamis given her depression and health problems, and that she was remorseful. He said psychological reports showed Bariamis possessed a pathological need to be liked when she engaged in her offending.
But he said her crimes were gravely serious, among the worst kind of white-collar offending, which had the potential to have an impact on the bank's customers, staff and shareholders.
"Despite your mental illness there is no doubt you knew what you were doing. You understood the differences between right and wrong and you chose to engage in very serious criminal behaviour," he said.
In June Bariamis was jailed for four years, with a minimum of two, for pleading guilty to defrauding the ATO of $1.8 million by falsifying 131 business activity statements in 2004-05 in her then role as a registered tax agent.
The County Court heard at the time Bariamis exploited weaknesses in the ATO's tax agent portal to obtain money she used on gambling, clothing, jewellery, furniture, travel, accommodation and restaurants.
Bariamis was later declared bankrupt and her accountancy firm was subsequently put into liquidation, which cost people their jobs and forced a partner into bankruptcy, the County Court heard.