Craig Raneberg has received the inevitable now that he’s been sentenced ten years for embezzling nearly $2.7 million from the Adelaide branch of Australian firm Minter Ellison. While given responsibility over finances as the company’s chief financial officer (CFO), he transferred money into his own private account – almost every fortnight, the judge noted – over a seven year period to fund lavish vacations and buy residential property.
Raneberg had “put into reality a somewhat fantasy life of the rich and famous” which “snowballed completely out of control,” Judge Geoffrey Muecke told the court.
Though Raneberg pled guilty to the embezzlement, he nevertheless had attempted desperately to forestall the inevitable. After his position was made redundant and he was let go in June of 2011, he fled to Thailand. Meanwhile, an internal audit revealed what sort of game he had been playing. He was caught at Sydney Airport in October and extradited to Adelaide.
Raneberg was characterized during the trial as being introverted and given to fantasy. After he admitted his wrongdoing, he was sentenced to the ten and half year sentence with a six year four month non-parole period.
Meanwhile, Adam Bannister of Minter Ellison Adelaide did damage control, saying in a statement that “Minter Ellison Lawyers SA and NT acknowledge that the matter involving Craig Raneberg has been dealt with by the court. We thank our dedicated staff and our clients who have remained steadfast in their support of our firm.”