Librarian Embezzles $123,366, Spends On Game Of War

Adam Winger walks out of the courtroom after he was sentenced to 30 days in jail in 1st District Court Monday, Aug. 13, 2018, in Logan, Utah. (Photo: Eli Lucero/The Herald Journal via AP, Pool)

Last year, Adam Winger, the director of the North Logan City library in Utah, resigned for reasons that were not immediately clear. Now things have become a teensy bit clearer: He’s been found guilty of spending $US89,000 ($123,366) in public money on mobile game sensation Game of War.

Earlier this year, local news outlet The Herald Journal reported, investigators found that Winger, 38, had purchased “hundreds” of Amazon, iTunes, and Google Play gift cards, most of which he put toward in-app purchases in Game of War—a free-to-play massively multiplayer online strategy game in which you collect resources, build things, and wait for a long time for the latter two things to happen.

He did the bulk of these purchases with two Amazon accounts, both of which were tethered to city and personal credit cards. On top of that, Winger was also charged with fudging invoices in order to cover his tracks.

Back in June, Winger pleaded guilty in the Cache County 1st District Court to theft and forgery, the former a second degree felony and the latter a third degree felony. This week, he was sentenced to 30 days in jail and 100 hours of community service. In addition, he was required to pay restitution of $US78,000 ($108,119) prior to the sentencing as part of his plea deal.

That, according to the Journal, helped him narrowly avoid prison. Winger’s attorney, Herm Olsen, said that Winger sold his house and drained his retirement fund in a “Herculean” effort to pay off the $US78,000 ($108,119) sum.

Another tragedy brought to us by ethically questionable microtransactions. And Kate Upton.


    These ****in' f2p games should be banned.

      Yeah, no one should have personal responsibility anymore. Let's ban unhealthy food and cars too.

        Not EXACTLY the same though. Cars and Junk food don't rely on human weakness and foibles to generate massive profits...


        Yeah nah, still not the same. The F2P model is a shitty, shitty model.

          Junk food relies on human weakness. You know it's bad for you. Some people eat way too much, others have self control and don't. Same for alcohol. Same for driving like a drongo.

            I don't understand though, what's your argument? You're ok with letting ppl who have obvious mental health issues bankrupt themselves on pokies, eat too much junk food and embezzle etc etc because the majority of ppl are fine?

            And btw, it's not purely self control. Come on man, you're smart enough to post on the internet, you know that's a really over-simplistic view of things.

              The argument just doesn't work for f2p only. You can apply the same argument to so many things.

              If you are not smart enough to manage your money, you should put system in place to avoid these things.

                Yep, like meth for example. If you can't regulate your own use of meth, you need to put a system in place to avoid these things. I think you are too dumb to realise that you are reading a story about someone who is completely addicted to something - this story is about addiction, not money management. There's a reason the EU is clamping down on this idiotic, predatory shit.

                  If you use meth to begin with, you are already a lost cause.

        I don't think anyone is suggesting there shouldn't be personal responsibility. His punishment seems to take that into consideration. And so it should.

        But let's be honest, institutions that promote gambling, whether that be casinos or online gaming know full well that sections of society are more prone to addictions and struggle to moderate behaviour even when they know it's wrong.

        And to add, the mobile online games are the worst, because they deliberately suck in people on the premise they are "free to play". At least a casino is obvious. Creators of mobile games know that most people will realise that it is essentially pay-to-win eventually and will quit, but equally their targets are the ones with addictive personalities who , once hooked, are unable to let go.

        They are as culpable for this guy's crime as he is.

        Those comparisons don't make sense. At least relate it to the TAB or something.

        Honestly, this is the same old argument. I just feel a little sorry for blokes like this who clearly have poor impulse control and have been gamed by some greedy corporate ****heads. Game of War is one of the worst offenders... literally designed from the ground up to trick people into spending relentless amounts of cash on what amounts to nothing.

        His life is now in ruins. But that's OK... you be an internet tough guy because you're mentally strong enough to avoid morally bankrupt sh*t like this. Maybe he will learn from this. Maybe he'll do it again and end up in jail / on the streets. Who cares.

          Don't need to be an internet tough guy, just need a brain.

          Wow, I have spent my entire last pay on this game, maybe I should stop. Oh wait, no, I'll just steal from work.

          No sympathy. He did not need to play that stupid game.

    "...guilty of spending $US89,000 ($123,366) in public money..."


    And yet people laughed when video game addiction was classified as a mental illness. People with solid mental health don't do things like this.

      Yah I feel for him. He would've known the whole time what he was doing, but he did it anyway. So not worth it.

      I would've spent it on hookers on blow. Much more mentally healthy choices.

      Actually I just wouldn't steal. Seems like a better move all round. He's got a criminal record now. What's his next job going to be? Walmart? Big step down from librarian.

      I didn't laugh... but at the same time I scoffed at its classification.

      There are like three types of addiction - behavioural, neurological and chemical... the joke is they list all the addictions as separate entities in the mental health materials based on the source of the addiction, so they can label patients easily, guilt them into issues they may not have and charge a fortune for services they may not need. Video Game Addiction is listed so they can charge parents thousands of dollars cause little Timmy plays Fortnite 3 hours a night and they don't understand him, or how that is different to a moron who doesn't know their mobile phone is an addiction that ruined his life by stealing.

      I think all microtransactions need to be regulated, not just loot boxes, because seriously so many of them are predatory on consumer wallets in nature. Pay us and we will make the game easier, pay us and you can play the next level now instead of waiting a day, pay us and you will get more pokeballs to throw, pay us and you will stop feeling like a loser... don't feel guilty here is some flashing lights to make you feel special you spent 10 bucks on nothing.

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