When employees steal from the company
WHAT MATTERS MOST - Atty. Josephus B. Jimenez (The Freeman) - October 24, 2020 - 12:00am

The whole day today, I am giving a special webinar via digital platform, for more than 100 sales executives and the top management team of one of the country’s biggest conglomerates with diverse portfolio of businesses ranging from food to real estate. The topic is “Frauds, malversations, and all forms of sales employees' dishonesty”.

I am going to discuss no less than 50 Supreme Court decisions on cases involving termination of employment for various offenses, including theft of company property, malversation of corporate funds, unauthorized use of company personnel and company resources, bribery, kickbacks, conflicts of interest, demanding money from contractors and suppliers, falsifying sales reports, and stealing from customers, suppliers and fellow employees,. In all these cases, the Supreme Court always upholds the prerogatives of employers to discipline and dismiss erring personnel. Long years in service does not excuse these despicable betrayal of employers' trust.

In one case decided just this year, the highest court of the land condemned the act of an ocean-going Filipino seafarer who was found guilty of diverting a big bulk of oil when their ships and oil tankers are on temporary anchor for supply load, delivery, or when there is an emergency repair needed. Of course, he was not alone but a member of a big syndicate. He was dismissed and his retirement pay for working for 24 years was forfeited, aside from the criminal and civil charges slapped on him and his cohorts. The court declared that stealing is the worst form of ingratitude and should be condemned by all. I concur.

I have more than 10 cases involving salesmen of beer and soft drinks companies, and these guys were found guilty of falsifying their sales reports, diverting proceeds of sales, selling promotional products, and conniving with customers in cheating the company. All of them lost their jobs and they shattered their careers and ruined the honor and reputation of their families. There was one who committed suicide, two others were jailed for estafa, and three suffered broken marriages and families. Most of these sales people committed fraud to finance their vices, ranging from alcoholism, gambling, womanizing, and even drugs.

One senior company executive of a cement factory based in Cebu was dismissed for demanding money from suppliers. One female regional manager of a big chain of fast food restaurants in the Visayas was audited and found with too much financial deficiencies. She was dismissed, filed a case, and lost before the Supreme Court. A regional finance director of a giant food and beverage company was dismissed for multiple counts of encashing her personal checks with the various cashiers in the sales offices. A bank manager also based in Cebu was dismissed for organizing a credit union that competes with the bank in the business of lending. Worse, he used bank premises, equipment, and personnel in transacting business.

In all these cases, the Supreme Court showed no mercy, declaring in one case involving kickbacks and bribery that compassion cannot be accorded to rascals, and social justice should not be made the refuge of scoundrels.


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