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Mint Worker Jailed for Stealing

A worker at Australia's mint has been jailed for stealing thousands of dollars of newly-minted coins which he smuggled out in his boots.

William Bosia Grzeskowiak was jailed for three years for stealing A$135,000 ($100,000) in new two-dollar coins over a 10 month period up to February 2006.

He avoided detection by hiding the coins in his steel-tipped boots, sometimes putting 150 coins in each.

Grzeskowiak, 48, was arrested while trying to change the coins into notes.

The judge criticised security at the Royal Australian Mint, in Canberra, saying it was "extraordinary" a worker could walk out with 300 coins in his boots.

The mint has since upgraded its systems.

Prosecutors said Grzeskowiak put newly-minted coins in his pocket, then transferred them to his boots while inside a lavatory cubicle.

Grzeskowiak said he started stealing because of an argument with his boss, and that he took the money because he enjoyed the challenge.

Police found A$100,000 in coins hidden in plastic buckets and shopping bags in the garage of Grzeskowiak's mother.