Worker ordered to repay Centrelink cash

Pilbara News
Judge's court wig and gavel
Camera IconJudge's court wig and gavel

A Karratha woman has been fined and ordered to pay back the remainder of more than $16,000 collected in Commonwealth social security payments based on incorrect information about her employment.

Gemma Lucy Taylor, 36, pleaded guilty to one Commonwealth charge of obtaining a financial advantage and appeared in Karratha Magistrate’s Court last week for sentencing.

The court was told Taylor began receiving fortnightly payments from Centrelink via the Department of Human Services while unemployed, but continued to collect payments to the sum of $16,801 from August, 2011, to July, 2012, after she started working for Rio Tinto on a more than $100,000 a year income.

Ms Taylor’s defence lawyer Marilyn Loveday said her client had begun the offending while in a difficult financial and personal situation, was very remorseful and had been making regular repayments since. Magistrate Brian Gluestein ordered Taylor to repay the outstanding $12,763 in payments plus fined her an additional $3000.

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