Three Irishmen arrested over alleged roof scam targeting pensioners in Australia


Michael Staines
Michael Staines

08.23 14 Mar 2019


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Three Irishmen have been arrested in connection with running a roof-fixing scam targeting pensioners in Australia.

The men were arrested separately in the last week as they attempted to leave the country.

New South Wales Police have said they are continuing to search for a fourth person in relation to the alleged scam.

Airport arrests

On March 7th, a 20-year-old man was arrested at Sydney Airport by Australian Federal Police as he attempted to leave for the UK.

Police allegedly discovered large amounts of cash and jewellery in his luggage.

He was charged with aggravated breaking and entering and denied police bail.

Then, on Saturday March 9th a 22-year-old man was arrested at Sydney Airport as he attempted to board a flight to Qatar.

Again police allegedly uncovered a large amount of cash and jewellery in his luggage.

He was charged with fraud and dealing in proceeds of crime; and refused police bail.

Court appearance

On Thursday morning, the two men – 20-year-old James O'Driscoll and 22-year-old Johnny Baker – appeared before Sutherland Local Court.

They were charged with defrauding a 72-year-old man out of AUD$42,000 (€26,000) after offering to do roof repairs.

Neither of the Irishmen applied for bail and both cases were adjourned until March 29th.

Extradition

On Monday a 20-year-old man was arrested at Melbourne’s Tullamarine airport as he tried to board a flight to Shanghai in China.

He has been extradited to Sydney where he is due to appear in court this afternoon.

He was taken to Kogarah Police Station and charged with dishonestly obtaining financial advantage by deception.

He was refused police bail and he is expected to appear before Sutherland Local Court in Sydney later today.

The men were arrested by Special Police Strike Force Denain – which was established to investigate a series of alleged frauds targeting elderly home-owners.

Detectives are also working with other police commands and Victoria Police investigating similar alleged fraud offences involving elderly victims.

With reporting from Aine Hegarty in Sydney


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