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Former Coles employee arrested, accused of $2 million theft

Image: AAP

A former Coles executive has been arrested and charged over allegations he transferred almost $2 million out of the supermarket's accounts.

Coles confirmed to Yahoo Finance last week that the Victorian Supreme Court had granted the company a freezing order on the ex-employee's assets. That was done to prevent him selling possessions that might be used later to recover the alleged losses.

Then Victoria Police confirmed Monday that a 36-year-old man was arrested in the south-east Melbourne suburb of Sandringham.

He was arrested and charged with "multiple thefts and deceptions for a very large sum of money".

"It is alleged the offending took place over a five month period between February and July this year," a police spokesperson said.

The Sandringham man is scheduled to appear at Melbourne Magistrates’ Court on August 13.

The supermarket giant started its legal action after "irregularities were detected by our internal finance checks" in late July.

A court affidavit for the asset freeze, reported Fairfax Mediaindicated the company found 13 irregular transactions adding up to $1.93 million.

The payments under scrutiny either didn't have invoices or had invoices sent from the employee's personal email, according to Coles head of corporate business protection Cameron Newell.

This is in addition to accusations that the man forged approvals from his manager to allow such payments.

The accused staffer, who Yahoo Finance has chosen not to name, has deactivated his social media accounts.

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