Guilty of Facebook rip- offs Ice addict jailed for sale scam
A MAN who advertised a car fridge on Facebook, then deleted his page after two men had sent him $ 1000, has been jailed for fraud.
Brendan John Bland, 30, made a Facebook profile under the fake name John Peterson but was caught because he gave his personal bank details to the unsuspecting buyers.
Bland pleaded guilty in Townsville Magistrates Court yesterday to two counts of fraud and one charge of breaching a probation order.
Prosecutor Darryn Casson told the court that, on May 7 this year, a Kirwan man saw an Engel car fridge posted to John Peterson’s page.
“The victim has agreed to purchase the car fridge via conversation on Facebook and the seller has provided his bank account details,” he said.
“The victim transferred $ 1000 into the bank account details provided by the seller.
“Arrangements were made for the victim to collect the car fridge, after which the seller no longer returned ( messages).”
The victim saw that Bland’s fraudulent Facebook page was deleted soon after and contacted police.
Suncorp Bank revealed the owner of the bank account to police and Bland was arrested.
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Bland had scammed another man in the exact same way a week prior, receiving $ 1000 on April 30.
“He does have previous convictions for this type of offending,” Mr Casson told the court. “It was an amateurish attempt, it wasn’t a sophisticated operation, it was one where he was always going to be caught.”
Mr Casson said Bland refused to be interviewed by police.
Bland was released on parole on December 6 last year, and this was cancelled in April.
He was unlawfully at large at the time of the Facebook frauds.
Defence solicitor Phil Rennick said Bland was a mining plant operator until 2015, when an ice addiction turned his world “upside down”.
“He’s been on a merry- go- round for the last two years, where he’s had periods of being clean, periods, like at the time of this offending, where he was addicted to the drug and using it quite heavily,” he said.
“It was a simple money grab to fuel his addiction, that’s the only explanation for his conduct.”
Magistrate Scott Luxton sentenced Bland to two months in jail, which will be suspended and remain operational for two years.
Bland is now in custody serving a jail term for previous offences, due to expire on August 15.
He was ordered to pay the victims $ 2000 in restitution but is not required to start paying it back until his release from jail.