Mum jailed for tap-and-go fraud
A Kalgoorlie-Boulder drug addict who went on a spending spree, racking up $5652 on fraudulent transactions with an unlawfully obtained card, has been jailed for nine months.
Delvene Kirsty Dickie, 37, was sentenced at Kalgoorlie Magistrate’s Court yesterday after pleading guilty to 145 charges, including 117 counts of gaining benefit by fraud and 15 attempts to gain benefit by fraud. Dickie was also convicted of being in possession of bank cards, a fuel card and a Qantas card, all suspected to be stolen or unlawfully obtained.
She faces other charges, including three counts of allegedly appropriating post from three different post boxes, to which she has pleaded not guilty.
The court was told between September 7 and September 19, Dickie used the tap-and-go facility on an American Express bank card to pay for taxis and buy mobile phones, pre-paid gift cards, perfume and cigarettes.
She also used the card to buy groceries, clothes and toys and other unknown items.
Police prosecutor Senior Constable Thomas Banyard said in the 10 years he had worked as a prosecutor, he had never come across a case with as many frauds in such a short space of time.
Defence lawyer Leneva Polmear said it was prolific offending but it was “out of character”.
She said Dickie used to have a re- sponsible job as a teacher’s aide when she lived in Perth with her husband and their children.
The court was told the family moved to Kalgoorlie-Boulder and Dickie was subjected to brutal attacks by her husband, who was jailed earlier this year for 18 months after assaulting her.
Ms Polmear said Dickie turned to methamphetamine and she had used half of the items fraudulently obtained to keep her six children in clothes and food and the other half to trade for drugs. She said Dickie, who had been in custody for nearly a month, was able to reflect on her offending with a “clear mind” after sobering up and she was extremely “embarrassed” and “ashamed”.
Magistrate Sandra De Maio said mitigation could be found in Dickie’s limited record, which began only in 2016.
She said, however, tap-and-go was a new crime and was easy to commit, which was why a sentence of deterrence was important.