Athena Razos jailed ahead of sentencing for stealing $1.5 million from Melbourne law firm

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A disqualified paralegal who stole nearly $1.6 million from a Melbourne law firm to build a new home has been thrown behind bars ahead of her sentence.

According to The Herald Sun, 59-year-old Athena Razos embezzled more than $1.5 million from a Melbourne legal firm between 2013 and 2017. This money went towards the construction of a new house in Box Hill South on land she had previously bought for about $1 million.

Razos’ offending was uncovered in late 2017 and the Victorian Legal Services Board found she was not a fit and proper person to work in the profession in 2020.

In November 2022, she formally pleaded guilty to 16 counts of obtaining financial advantage and property by deception.

Razos faced the Victorian County Court on Thursday for a pre-sentencing hearing after more than a year of adjournments as she underwent mental health treatment.

Her barrister Gideon Boas said Razos had repaid the law firm more than $1.1 million in 2018, before she was charged with any offences. Razos struck a deal with the firm to repay a further sum of about $330,000 once she has obtained funds from the sale of the Box Hill South house which has been restrained.

Razos was remanded in custody despite her defence team arguing that she was “not a flight risk” due to her “being on bail for years” and having appointments with a psychiatrist lined up.

The case was adjourned for further plea later this month.

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