News

Conmen jailed after selling fake Gumtree items

TWO online scammers are behind bars after each rorting Gumtree customers of more than $30,000.

Ashley John Ernst and Mitchell Cox pleaded guilty in the Hervey Bay Magistrates Court to dozens of fraud offences involving the advertisement of bogus items for sale on the popular online trading post.

While the two met for the first time in the Hervey Bay watch house, startling similarities in their offending prompted Hervey Bay Magistrate Graeme Tatnell to warn that using Gumtree to rip off customers was "just a recipe for getting caught".

ERNST, whose details appear on several scam watch sites, was previously convicted of seven counts of fraud in 2004, received a suspended jail term in 2002, and served actual time for further offences in 2006.

In 2009, he was fined for scamming more than $500 from an unsuspecting elderly man to whom he had agreed to sell a car.

His most recent charges related to 16 dodgy transactions on Gumtree where he advertised computers and phones, organised for the funds to be transferred into his account and failed to deliver.

On one occasion he sold an Avis rental car to a man who traded in his own Land Rover, paid $20,650 as the balance and soon found himself with $5480 in unpaid rental fees.

Ernst's lawyer said he had previously had a problem with gambling which had since been replaced with a drug habit but that he was taking part in Narcotics Anonymous at the jail.

Cox, who had a lengthy criminal history in NSW, was said to have offended not for his own benefit but to fund presents for his partner and child.

The court heard he was working as a local personal trainer when he was arrested for ripping off customers who thought they were buying car parts and body kits.

Magistrate Graeme Tatnell told Cox "to get into your brain that to improve yourself, you don't take people's money".

He said online fraud "just doesn't work".

"This offence is very prevalent in the community but I don't know why," Mr Tatnell said.

"It's just a recipe for getting caught."

Ernst was jailed for a total of 21 months and will be eligible for parole in November.

Cox was jailed for 18 months and will be eligible for parole in August.

Topics:  editors picks, fraud, gumtree, jail time, online scams




Fraser Coast Council supports 'stop the mosque' petition

SPLIT: Seven of the Fraser Coast's councillors have voted in support of a petition titled 'Stop the mosque' which would allow applications for future places of worship be impact assessable.

A petition titled 'stop the mosque' went before council on today.

Teen, 15, punched in the face in schoolyard

Police generic, crime scene.  Photo Tessa Mapstone / South Burnett Times

Teen injured in school incident

Resident taken to hospital after clothes dryer fire

Fire truck generic.  Photo Tessa Mapstone / South Burnett Times

Fire crews were called to the home about 10.45pm

Latest deals and offers

The Bachelor host: this year's season is a cracker

The Bachelor host Osher Gunsberg.

GUNSBERG says tonight will be "the best night of TV of the year".

Kerri-Anne Kennerley to Sonia Kruger: "Stay brave"

She said her television peer should "stay brave"

Swimwear designer looking for love on The Bachelor

Noni Janur on her first day of filming.

The 25-year-old is one of 22 women vying for Richie Strahan’s heart

Three reasons your mind will be blown this week

Alan Dale and Jacki Weaver in a scene from the TV series Secret City.

THREE shows on Foxtel to make your mind boggle.

Elena wins MasterChef: “I’m ecstatic and eager to celebrate"

MasterChef Australia 2016 winner Elena Duggan, from Noosa.

NOOSA chefs survive marathon grand final dish by Heston Blumenthal.

You can own this Queensland town for just $1

Yelarbon

Unprecedented auction of town's business centre with no reserve

Work starts on $15M Caloundra apartment building

Turning the first sod at the Aqua View Apartments site in Kings Beach are (from left) husband-and-wife developers Alex Yuan and Stella Sun with construction company Tomkins director Mike Tomkins and Councillor Tim Dwyer.

Developers excited about addition to Kings Beach skyline

72-year-old Coast developer set to start new project

GREEN LIGHT: The Cosmopolitan has been approved for development at Cotton Tree.

Meet the Canberran set to deliver another chapter for Coast suburb

Plans revealed for 1500-lot 'master-planned community'

Precinct will be bounded by Boundary St and Shoesmith Rd

Ecco Ripley sales run sparks prime release

MOVING IN: Sekisui House has announced the release of more residential blocks at Ecco Ripley.

Sekisui House is preparing to unveil more land at Ecco Ripley

The climb is slow but property on the way up

Michael Matusik, director of Matusik Property Insights.Photo Allan Reinikka / The Morning Bulletin

The improvement would be mild when compared to past cycles