Lloyd Carr pleaded guilty to fraud in a case that saw $634,000 taken from the Alberta Alcohol and Drug Abuse Commission. ((CBC))

A former senior bureaucrat in Alberta's addiction treatment agency will be sentenced Friday afternoon for defrauding the province of $634,000.

Lloyd Carr, 46, pleaded guilty in February to diverting money from the tobacco reduction program at the Alberta Alcohol and Drug Abuse Commission to support his gambling habit.

He entered a guilty plea to one count of fraud over $5,000. He has paid back $375,000. 

Carr was fired in 2006 after staff at the agency became suspicious and contacted Alberta's then-auditor general, Fred Dunn, to investigate.

The agency came under harsh criticism from Dunn, who said more should have been done to ensure the money wasn't misused, and for not completing a background check on Carr before he was hired in 1997.

At his sentencing hearing on Monday, Carr told the court he took the money because he had a gambling addiction to VLTs and slot machines. Carr told the judge he took responsibility for his actions and wanted to "man up" for his mistakes.

A pre-sentence report by a probation officer presented to the court Monday stated, "it would be difficult for this Officer to believe with certainty that [Carr] is taking full responsibility for his actions."

"While he claims he had a gambling problem," the report said, "he has never sought counselling for this alleged addiction."

A victim impact statement written by Alberta Health Services said the fraud damaged the reputation of the agency, hurt staff morale and set back progress on the tobacco reduction program.

The Crown asked for a prison sentence of three to five years. Carr's lawyer asked for a conditional sentence that would amount to house arrest.