Fraudster's 'dishonesty over a lifetime' sparks bail concerns
A FRAUDSTER'S "dishonesty over a lifetime” means he deserves more time locked up, a crown prosecutor says.
But a dispute over parole on Thursday has postponed Fraser Coast con artist Ronald James Richardson's sentencing.
Brisbane District Court heard Richardson's parole was suspended when he was charged with new offences.
In 2013, Richardson was sentenced to four years in jail after a jury found him guilty of fraud.
He was to be sentenced this week after pleading guilty to dishonestly gaining a benefit or advantage of $30,000 or more.
Judge William Everson said the defence case was that Richardson got charged with the extra offences, so was not given parole as soon as he otherwise would have.
It is yet to be seen how much time the parole issue would shave off Richardson's next sentence.
The judge mulled over whether to send Richardson, who was on bail, back into custody.
He said the matter had been delayed on numerous occasions” and Richardson was a "recidivist fraudster” with a criminal history.
Richardson had previously breached his bail conditions in New South Wales, Judge Everson said.
"You're dealing with ... someone the Parole Board will be quite sceptical about, despite the fact he's a non-violent offender.”
Crown Prosecutor Ron Swanwick said Richardson should have more time in custody.
"Given his history and his chronic pattern of dishonesty over a lifetime, he's not deserving of the leniency that would otherwise be applied,” he said.
Defence barrister Andrew Hoare said his client came to court knowing a return to custody was possible, but Richardson had not breached bail in Queensland.
At the jury trial before his 2013 sentencing, the court heard Richardson previously owned Fraser Shores Medical Centre at Hervey Bay before selling it to a doctor he had sponsored to work in Australia.
He suggested buying it back in 2008, and put an offer of shares to potential investors.
Richardson argued he did intend to deliver a 20% annual return on $2.5 million he received. But the jury found he did not use the money for its intended purpose.
Richardson's case will be mentioned again on Friday.