Athena Razos stone faced at final hearing for stealing millions from Melbourne law firm

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Athena Razos – a disqualified paralegal who stole nearly $1.6 million from a Melbourne law firm to build a new home – has appeared in the County Court from remand for a final plea hearing.

The 59-year-old 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.

money
Athena Razos has pleaded guilty to stealing nearly $1.6 million from a Melbourne law firm to build a new home.

On Thursday, June 13, Ms Razos appeared before the County Court for an hour-long hearing where she stayed mostly stone faced, occasionally bowing her head during submissions by both sides.

Much of the submissions hinged on Razos’ mental health before, during, and after the offending occurred. Forensic psychologist Patrick Newton told the court Razos had a depressive disorder which impacted her ability to make clear and rational decisions.

In his submissions, Razos’ defence lawyer Dr Gideon Boas noted that she had repaid the law firm more than $1.1 million in 2018, before she was charged with any offences.

The prosecutor indicated that Razos was “robbing Peter to pay Paul” from the law firm’s trust fund, and said a high level of planning went into her actions.

Razos will be sentenced on July 19.

READ MORE: Dementia patient faces eviction amid dispute with Melbourne conwoman Athena Razos

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