Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

Ex-Mayor Found Guilty; Antoniolli Faces Verdict Following Two-Week Trial

Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

Ex-Mayor Found Guilty; Antoniolli Faces Verdict Following Two-Week Trial

Article excerpt

Byline: Ross Irby ross.irby@qt.com.au

ANDREW Antoniolli will have to wait nearly two months to learn of the penalty he will receive after being convicted of all 13 fraud related charges levelled against him.

In a two-hour judgment delivered at Ipswich Magistrate's Court yesterday, Magistrate Anthony Gett found the former mayor guilty of 12 fraud charges and one of attempted fraud.

That meant 48-year-old Antoniolli contravened council policy and dishonestly used its community donation fund to buy items at fundraising auctions by various community groups.

As a glum-faced Antoniolli listened closely to proceedings - at times restlessly clasping his hands on the bench - it would have become apparent to him as to where the decision was headed with Mr Gett outlining each charge and the evidence heard during his trial.

Mr Gett found Antoniolli's acts to be dishonest when assessed by the standards of "ordinary decent people," and that subjective intent to commit fraud had been established.

Antoniolli's wife Karina, who was seated in the courtroom, used a tissue to wipe away tears as she listened.

Mr Gett said it was clear from evidence put forward by Crown prosecutor Sarah Farnden that Antoniolli had either re-purposed items obtained at community fundraising auctions, did not collect them at all, or stored them in his council offices or home.

Mr Gett said Antoniolli did not disclose to the community donation fund that the payments were linked with the auctions.

He said Antoniolli had shown dishonest intent because he had knowledge of the flaws in the community donation fund, noting that staff were directed to make no reference to auctions when filling out documentation. The court heard emails had been deleted regarding payment and invoices, with some items recorded as personal property, and some items stored at his home until the CCC investigation occurred. …

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