Woman or­dered to pay back so­cial se­cu­rity money

Pilbara News - - News - Ali­cia Per­era

A woman who re­ceived al­most $20,000 in Com­mon­wealth so­cial se­cu­rity pay­ments for which she was in­el­i­gi­ble has been or­dered to pay back the money and to serve an in­ten­sive su­per­vi­sion or­der.

The 37-year-old woman re­ceived more than $19,000 in Cen­tre­link sin­gle par­ent pay­ments over an al­most two-year pe­riod un­til Oc­to­ber, 2015 while work­ing full-time on a $76,000-a-year in­come, in ex­cess of the pay­ment thresh­old.

Ap­pear­ing be­fore Kar­ratha Mag­is­trate’s Court for sen­tenc­ing last week, hav­ing pre­vi­ously pleaded guilty to three counts of ob­tain­ing a fi­nan­cial ad­van­tage, she was given a 12-month in­ten­sive su­per­vi­sion or­der and resti­tu­tion or­der for the out­stand­ing $16,261.99.

Her de­fence lawyer, Phillip Kelly, told the court the woman had been ex­pe­ri­enc­ing per­sonal and fi­nan­cial hard­ship at the time.

Mag­is­trate Robert Young said the amount of money in­volved was “sub­stan­tial” and stressed the im­por­tance of de­ter­rence in this type of case, but said the woman’s ini­tial “self-dec­la­ra­tion” to au­thor­i­ties, early guilty pleas and per­sonal cir­cum­stances at the time were in her favour.

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