Conman claimed to have brain tumour

Court House-entranceA man who told a woman he met on an internet dating site that he had a brain tumour and needed money for medication has pleaded guilty to two charges of obtaining by deception in the Christchurch District Court.

The money was actually used to fuel the man’s drug habit, Judge Brian Callaghan was told.

Paul William Abbott, 33, firstly told the woman that his ex-girlfriend had a gang debt to pay and said he could not go to work because gang members were after him for the debt. She loaned him $250 cash.

Several days later he told her he had lost his wallet and credit cards and she gave him more money for a cell phone bill and petrol.

On March 19 he received $260 for his brain tumour medication, with a promise he would repay her when he received his new bank card. He continued offending against the victim until he had received a total of $580 from her.

He broke off all contact with the woman, and when she went to his address he no longer lived there.

Abbott told police he knew he should pay the money back, but also knew he wouldn’t, and he was using the woman to fuel his drug habit.

On March 6 another victim met Abbott on the dating site, and she loaned him $260 to register with the speedway at Woodford Glen where he said he raced cars. He told her he had lost his eft-pos card.

She then loaned him another $280 to repair his truck, and another $250 when he told her he wanted to contribute to the family of his best friend who had died of blood poisoning.

Her last loan to him was after Abbott called her telling her his truck was stuck at the Rakaia River and he needed $150 to pay someone to get it out for him.

He admitted to police he used the $940 he conned out of her on his drug habit too.

Judge Callaghan remanded Abbott on bail for sentencing on August 26.

He asked for a pre-sentence report to be prepared, and recommended a restorative justice conference with the victims. He convicted and discharged Abbott on a charge of breach of bail, and he will be sentenced on a driving while forbidden charge on the same date.

Abbott was jailed for two years seven months in 2012 for the same type of offending.

 

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