Tafolosa Bloomfield jailed on embezzlement charges

Tafolosa Kaitapu Bloomfield stole $204,033 from the Forum Travel Ltd, a travel agency that had to be sold because of the financial hit.

Bloomfield, a senior travel consultant was arrested and charged in May 2010, after the Forum Travel management discovered irregularities and deficiencies in her daily balance.

The former Miss Heilala was sentenced to three-years and four-months imprisonment.

In handing down his verdict, Judge Charles Cato said:

“It saddens me to think that a mother of four children and a wife of a person holding a responsible position in Tonga with all the advantages that this should bring should engage in conduct of this kind

“It is very surprising to me that she seems to have dismissed from her mind the adverse consequences to her family when her fraud would be detected.”

“This case is by far the worst of its kind I have encountered here. The fraud was systematic, frequent and carried on over a lengthy period of a mature person who could only be regarded as a trusted and senior consultant.”

“Without trust businesses cannot efficiently function and flourish and without viable businesses there will be limited employment and commercial opportunity in Tonga. Embezzlement damages the integrity of business.

Judge Cato however gave Bloomfield credit for lack of previous convictions also the fact that she was remorseful.

As a result she was given eight months reduction and imposed on her four years and four months imprisonment for embezzlement.

He also suspended the sentence of imprisonment for a maximum term of 12 months

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