Drought falsification charges laid

Cunnamulla man to face court on 41 drought forgery charges

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A 41-year-old Cunnamulla man has been arrested for allegedly falsifying documents and claiming drought assistance in excess of $60,000.

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A 41-year-old Cunnamulla man has been arrested for allegedly falsifying documents and claiming drought assistance in excess of $60,000.

On Thursday detectives from State Crime Command’s Major and Organised Crime Squad (Rural) served a notice to appear on the man for 41 charges, including five counts of fraud, 18 counts of forgery and 18 for uttering a false document.

The investigation commenced after the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries referred the matter to police last month.

It is alleged the man falsified and submitted documents in order to receive assistance from the department, which administers the Drought Relief Assistance Scheme.

“This is a tough time for farmers and those impacted so heavily by the drought. We take offences like this quite seriously as it has the potential to effect those who genuinely need and deserve this assistance,” Detective Inspector Troy Pukallus, MOCS (Rural) said.

The man is due to appear in St George Magistrates Court on January 22, 2019.

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