The former director of the Queensland Wine Industry Association (QWIA) received a two-year sentence for defrauding the association of close to $25,000.

Father of two Gerald Marcus Keatinge wrote himself 12 cheques totalling $24,100 between November 2006 and December 2007 to help meet repayments for two cars, AAP reported.

The sentence was handed down despite character references from the likes of Bruce Tyrrell that described Keatinge as a well-respected industry fiugre who made a monumental error in judgement.

Keatinge’s barrister said his client had acted with “stupidity” to avoid discussing financial problems with his wife and always intended to repay the monies. He said the monies were repaid shortly after he resigned from the board last year.

Keatinge, who now works in the orchard at Queensland’s Cloverly Estate, will serve a minimum of three months behind bars.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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