Son swindles father’s nest egg to fund lifestyle


A son who swindled his father's nest egg to buy used cars and motorcycles was given immediate parole to start paying back his debt.

Vaughan Robert Ryan, 46, made 12 unauthorised transactions from his father's bank account totalling $46,550 in October last year.

The Townsville District Court heard Ryan transferred the money into his own bank account and other accounts.

Crown prosecutor Molly Mahlouzarides said the offence was "not a particularly sophisticated fraud".

"It is aggravated as it was a breach of trust given the lineal relationship and there was no remorse at the time when the complainant confronted him about it," she said.

The court heard Ryan also attempted to steal a white ute and was found to be in possession of cannabis seeds, a bong and scales in December last year.

Ryan pleaded guilty to seven charges including fraud, attempted stealing and possessing dangerous drugs.

Defence barrister Madonna Hayes said her client had been living with his father in Vincent who was a recipient of an age pension and wanted to start paying his father back.

"He used that money to purchase a number of used cars and motorcycles that he intended to do up and sell at profit and his intention was to make money to provide a better lifestyle for himself and his father," she said.

"He is keen to get out prior to December this year so he can take advantage of the government's COVID-19 early access to superannuation."

Judge Julie Dick SC told Ryan that stealing his father's nest egg was a "betrayal of trust" and she would reduce his sentence to right his wrong.

"I am not persuaded by the fact because it is a lineal relationship that it isn't less serious fraud - in fact, I think it is worse," she said.

"The thing that caught my ear is if you get out early you might be able to get some of your super out and give your father $10,000 back."

Judge Dick SC declared the 291 days spent in pre-sentence custody as time already served and sentenced Ryan to three years' jail with immediate parole.

Originally published as Son swindles father's nest egg to fund lifestyle