The jury is expected to hear when Rogers mentioned travel, Rosamond would say “just leave it with me”, and the travel plans would be organized with no cost to her. Later, when Human Group invoices came to Rogers for approval, they allegedly included the cost of her own holidays and an additional mark-up.
“Rogers will tell you she knew she was approving invoices that included provision for her personal benefits that the defendant was arranging,” Mackenzie said.
“The defendant had Rosemary Rogers in her pocket… [she] could invoice the NAB for almost anything she wanted.”
The prosecutor said Rosamond bought Rogers a BMW M5 worth $172,000, a $91,000 caravan, a $145,000 boat, berthing fees at a marina, cash, prepaid credit cards, and a number of luxurious holidays including a $620,000 trip to the United States, which included the use of private jets.
Rosamond regularly arranged accommodation and flights for Rogers and her family, the jury was told, including flights to Chile as a present for Rogers’ nanny, weekends away at the Wolgan Valley resort north-west of Sydney, helicopter flights and limousine transfers, and a $250,414 stay at a private island in Fiji.
On one occasion, the prosecutor said, Rosamond arranged for Rogers to stay at the Hilton Hotel in Melbourne, but Rogers complained that the rooms were too small and she was transferred to Crown Towers instead.
The prosecutor said Rosamond and Rogers became so close that they referred to each other as “bestie” and went to high-end restaurants and horse races together, with Rosamond amending her will to leave 5 per cent of her estate to Rogers.
Mackenzie said Rogers was given “in excess of $2.5 million in corrupt benefits” between January 2013 and August 2016, during which time she approved more than 15 invoices for Human Group worth tens of millions of dollars.
Questions were raised about the invoices in late 2017 by another NAB staff member, with the jury shown an email in which the staffer said she had “fallen off her chair” when she saw the cost. Rogers was able to explain away her invoices using her seniority and the sometimes secretive nature of projects in the chief executive’s office, the prosecutor said.
The court heard NAB was Human Group’s “only substantial client” between 2013 and 2018, with the bank “keeping the defendant and her company afloat”.
Rogers has been prosecuted and jailed for her role in the NAB arrangement, the jury was told, and is expected to give evidence in the trial.
Rosamond is also accused of presenting an inflated invoice to a second company, after she was recommended to it by a former NAB staff member. She allegedly quoted a price of about $120,000 for two Christmas parties and sent through an invoice for $620,884, offering a doctored email to suggest a former staff member had agreed to the amount.
The trial continues.
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