Debt paid back after ‘mistake’

A 44-YEAR-OLD woman was released immediately after being sentenced to three months prison in Proserpine Magistrates’ Court on Monday.

Pauline Maree Enkleman was also placed on a $1000 bond for three years after pleading guilty to three counts of obtaining a financial advantage.

The court heard that the married mother of five had obtained a total of $9460.95 of undue benefits from Centrelink after failing to report a combination of her own and her partner’s income during two separate periods between April 2004 and August 2008.

The lawyer for the defendant told the court Enkleman had not deliberately tried to defraud the Commonwealth government and rather she had made a mistake due to the fact that she had misunderstood reporting procedure.

The court heard that Enkleman had repaid the debt in full, taking steps such as selling her car to do so.

In sentencing, Magistrate Athol Kennedy told the defendant that if she was in doubt she should have sought advice from Centrelink.


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