News

Career criminal racks up $12,357 in unpaid fines

Damien Estreich, 23, owes the state more than $12,000 in unpaid court fines.
Damien Estreich, 23, owes the state more than $12,000 in unpaid court fines. Contributed

MEET Damien Norman Estreich, who at 23, is already a career criminal, owing the state more than $12,000 in unpaid court fines.

Despite having a criminal history littered by drug, weapon and violence offences, Estreich has never served actual jail time.

Instead, he is among the many Wide Bay criminals going through the revolving doors of the region's watchhouses, only to walk from court deeper in debt.

As prosecutors and defence lawyers prepare for another day of battle, the Chronicle reveals how repeat offenders are making a mockery of the system.

In the six years Estreich has been an adult by law, he has had many a brief stint in custody after being locked up at the time of an offence or picked up by police for breaching bail/probation/domestic violence orders and awaiting court dates.

The only time he was sentenced to jail was in September last year when he was given immediate parole

When he appeared in court last week for breaching a bail condition by drinking alcohol when ordered not to, Magistrate Graeme Tatnell asked if he was aware of how much he currently owed to SPER.

Grinning, Estreich replied "$12,357 ... the letter came yesterday".

Estreich, who lists his job description on Facebook as "crack dealer", told the magistrate he had "smashed up a police car" and was "expecting some jail time" but that a visiting magistrate had fined him (the fine was more than $1000 with $950 restitution, both of which were referred to SPER).

In handing out another fine for the bail breach, Mr Tatnell said it "would be pleasant not to have you come back" and if he did, he would be off to jail.

The amount owed to SPER across Queensland in the last financial year exceeded $9million.

Queensland Attorney General Jarrod Bleijie said while it was important the judiciary continued to have wide discretion, the government shared Queenslanders' frustration over inadequate sentencing.

He would not be drawn on whether the government was considering changes to SPER but warned penalties had already increased for murder, firearm and sexual offences and said "we will continue to rebalance the scales of justice in other areas".

Topics:  editors picks hervey bay hervey bay magistrates court unpaid fines



Science Festival seriously awesome

CALLING everyone who wants to see, hear and be a part of something totally cool: this is where you need to be this March.

Drink where the cool kids do this summer

There are a bunch of new bars open in Brisbane, make sure you're there!

CHECK out these new funky bars.

Discover Brisbane’s laneway gems

Brisbane's laneways will surprise you.

NOT all of Brisbane City is as it seems…

Top five things to experience this summer in Brisbane

Tangalooma is amazing if you're keen for a dive, kayak or swim.

THIS summer get out and explore your capital city.

Don’t go chasing waterfalls…find them on these drives!

The Scenic Rim is just one place nearby that you'll love.

BRISBANE isn’t all bright lights and city slickers.

Your boots are made for walking these tours

Brisbane Greeters tours are a great way to learn the local history of the city.

YOU don’t need a bike or bus for a seriously good tour of Brisbane.

Is Brisbane the new arts and culture capital?

Check out GOMA's latest exhibition - it's all about hair! GOMA 10 Ambassador Patience Hodgson visits Nervescape V 2016 by Icelandic artist Hrafnhildur Arnardóttir (aka Shoplifter), commissioned for ‘Sugar Spin: you, me, art and everything’ at the Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane. 
Photograph: Natasha Harth, QAGOMA

THE rest of the world should be envious of this line-up!

Mayor should inform public of CCC result: Cr Lewis

Fraser Coast Regional Council meeting, Maryborough Chambers - Councillor David Lewis.

'Anomalies' were reported in September last year

Tears flow for top Turtle Tremaine

TRAGEDY: Tremaine Tairawhiti, middle row second left, celebrates with his Turtles teammates on Friday.

Players mourn for one of their own

Local Partners

Why Hollywood’s siding with Brad Pitt over Angelina Jolie

TOWARD the end of last month’s Golden Globes ceremony, the producer of the nominated drama Moonlight made a surprise onstage appearance: Brad Pitt.

Tensions high at pointy end of MKR's round two

Things are really heating up on My Kitchen Rules.

Games are being played around the My Kitchen Rules table

Jungle Jay sent packing from I'm a Celebrity

I'm A Celebrity ... Get Me Out Here! contestant Jay Laga'aia with Keira.

BIG friendly giant Jay Laga'aia has been eliminated from I'm A Celeb

Carson Kressley brings 'camp' to I'm a Celebrity jungle

"I am not all Park Avenue and daffodils” ... Carson Kressley.

Meet the "campest” campmate to star on I'm a Celebrity.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi mystery already solved

FILE- This undated file photo provided by Disney shows Daisey Ridley as Rey, left, and John Boyega as Finn, in a scene from the film, \"Star Wars: The Force Awakens.\" Hasbro said it is changing its Star Wars Monopoly set after an 8-year-old girl became upset that Rey, the movie's female heroine, was not included as a figure along with Darth Vader and Kylo Ren. (Disney/Lucasfilm via AP, File) MANDATORY CREDIT

A key mystery surrounding the title of episode eight has been solved

Kids' game "full of f**king paedophiles" according to dad

A mortified dad has expressed serious concerns over an online game

Lisa Marie Presley's ex caught with child pics: court

Lisa Marie Presley, at right, and her husband, Michael Lockwood back in 2010. FILE

Lisa Marie, 49, claimed she was left “sick to her stomach”

Expert: Why renters, home buyers may struggle

Matusik Property Insights director Michael Matusik.

What's next for the city's housing market

Massive seaside development of 3200 lots

DESIRABLE LIFESTYLE: The masterplan for the proposed Elliott Heads Estate.

"There's nothing else left along the coastline of Queensland now"

Potential home buyers punished for doing the 'right thing'

Should I go to university or buy a house?

50 more high rise buildings planned for Brisbane CBD

Height limits have been scrapped for Brisbane CBD

800,000 more people expected to work in city over next 20 years

New suburb in the crosshairs of Coast vandals

UNDER WRAPS: Graffiti on art installations at the entrance to the newly opened Bells Creek Arterial Road has been covered up.

Vandal rechristens Stockland as something less than complimentary

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!