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Border Force agent sentenced over fraudulent tourist refund claims

The Mandarin
Date published
December 2021

Relevant impacts: Financial impact, reputational impact

A former Australian Border Force (ABF) officer has pleaded guilty to obtaining a financial advantage by deception after processing fraudulent claims worth $72,000.

It follows an investigation into ABF officers defrauding the Australian Government through the Tourist Refund Scheme – an initiative to enable departing overseas travellers to claim a tax refund for goods bought in Australia.

The officer has been sentenced to two years' imprisonment.

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Related countermeasures

Make sure a manager, independent person or expert oversees actions and decisions. Involving multiple people in actions and decisions increases transparency and reduces the opportunity for fraud.

Verify any requests or claim information you receive with an independent and credible source.

Use system workflows to make sure all requests, claims or activities are approved only by the appropriate decision-maker.

Separate duties by allocating tasks and associated privileges for a business process to multiple staff. This is very important in areas such as payroll, finance, procurement, contract management and human resources. Systems help to enforce the strong separation of duties. This is also known as segregation of duties.

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