Warrawong woman accused of $15k housing trust fraud

A 50-year-old Warrawong woman has been charged with defrauding the Illawarra Housing Trust of more than $15,000.

The alleged offences occurred some time before August 2013, and were uncovered after a trust staff member alerted NSW Housing to "significant discrepancies" between the organisation's budgeted and actual income.

The true amount alleged to have been gained fraudulently will not be known until the woman faces court. However, under the charge she faces, the amount must be at least $15,000.

A state government investigation was instigated in April 2013, and the woman was stood down later that year. The non-government organisation manages more than 1000 properties in Wollongong, Shellharbour and Kiama, 974 of which are linked in some way to Housing NSW.

File picture.

File picture.

On Thursday, trust chairman David Campbell said changes had been made to the way the organisation operated since the alleged fraud was uncovered.

"We've taken some advice from forensic accountants," Mr Campbell said.

"The trust has put in a lot of effort to change internal procedures . . . and we're confident that they would be at best-practice level.

"The review was initiated by the board and that review made recommendations and the board adopted those recommendations," he said.

Mr Campbell said there had been no change in the number of dwellings the trust administered as a result of the alleged fraud.

The woman is due to appear in Wollongong Local Court in May.

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