Business environment ‘ripe for error’, court told

By Sam Dickfos

A bookkeeper accused of defrauding the company she worked for was thrust into a chaotic business environment ripe for error, according to her defence barrister.

Kim Marie Scofield has pleaded not guilty to four counts of defrauding Bazaar Marketing of $35,000 between 2012 and 2016.

Ms Scofield is alleged to have funnelled the money from the company, which promotes music festivals such as Soundwave, into her own bank account.

Defence barrister Clare Hurley told the jury in closing statements at the Maroochydore District Court Ms Scofield and her boss Lynda Simpson had a relationship that often blurred the lines between professional and personal.

“Ms Simpson said my client (Ms Scofield) was the diamond in the rough of the company,” Ms Hurley said.

Ms Simpson had a verbal agreement with Ms Scofield that she could borrow money from the company and pay it back when she could, Ms Hurley said.

“Doesn’t that just invite mistakes?” Ms Hurley said.

Ms Hurley said Ms Scofield kept records of all transactions.

“Who in their right mind would create a paper trail if you were setting out to be deceitful?” Ms Hurley said.

Ms Hurley said Ms Simpson, the central witness for the prosecution, was unreliable.

“Lynda Simpson has all the records that could make or break all of this,” Ms Hurley said.

But Crown prosecutor Aleksandra Nikolic told the court Ms Simpson gave all the evidence the police asked of her.

“Lynda was an extremely credible witness,” Ms Nikolic said.

“She was very calm and forthright in her evidence.”

Ms Nikolic said Ms Scofield’s answers during cross examination were often “vague and evasive”.

The jury is expected to retire to consider their verdict tomorrow.

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