Perth Man Arrested and Charged Over Bogus Baby Bonus Claims

(LAWFUEL) – A 33-year-old Perth man will face Perth Magistrates Court today, charged with using the identities of deceased persons to claim more than $300,000 in false Baby Bonus payments.

In a joint Australian Federal Police (AFP) and Centrelink investigation, the AFP arrested the man this morning after conducting search warrants on his Nollamara home and Morley business premises, where items were seized relevant to the charges.

The AFP will allege in court that the man used his position as a Medicare
Australia employee to access the Centrelink records of deceased persons to obtain encrypted Tax File Numbers (TFNs).

It will then be alleged that the man used the TFNs to create 23 false claims for Baby Bonus and immunisation payments for 58 fictitious children which were then paid into his bank account.

The man was charged with 23 counts of abuse of public office under Section 142.2, 23 counts of obtaining advantage by deception under Section 134.2 and two counts of money laundering under Section 400.4 and 400.6 of the Commonwealth Criminal Code Act 1995.

The maximum penalty for the abuse of public office offences is five years
imprisonment, while the maximum penalty for obtaining financial advantage by deception is 10 years imprisonment.

The maximum penalty for the money laundering offences is 20 years
imprisonment and/or a $132,000 fine.

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