A fraudster who told various chain stores she was from Wellington City Council and other organisations to steal thousands of dollars worth of electronic goods has been jailed.
Judge Peter Butler described Hineawa Noanoa’s offending as "orchestrated, planned and repetitive," in Lower Hutt District Court today.
Noanoa was sentenced to 18 months jail.
She had pleaded guilty to more than 20 charges including shoplifting, theft and obtaining by deception.
The court heard more than $22,500 was outstanding from Noanoa’s crimes.
Judge Butler declined to order reparations, saying it would give the victims of Noanoa’s crimes false hopes of being repaid.
He noted $5000 in reparation was still owed from 29 previous convictions for similar offences.
Noanoa’s lawyer Colin Ross said his client’s life had been "chaotic", but she was willing to change.
His client was the only one of a group of offenders to be charged, so was "facing the music" he said.
The court heard that stores targeted included The Warehouse Bond and Bond and Dick Smith.
Claiming to be from Wellington City Council, Allied Work Force and the Wellington Regional Stadium Trust, she falsely ordered $9490 worth of goods including cellphones and televisions from Dick Smith in Lower Hutt in August last year.
She tried the same ploy at a Lower Hutt Bond and Bond with a group of associates.
With order numbers similar to those used by Hutt Valley District Health Board, they stole computers, smartphones and laptops worth $21,624.
However, the courier became suspicious when asked to deliver the goods to a suburban house. The courier contacted the health board and the frauds were uncovered by police.
On March 28 this year, she completed the bold theft of two air-conditioning units from The Warehouse in both Upper Hutt and Lower Hutt.
She and an associate walked out of the Upper Hutt store with one of the units after taking it from a shelf and trying to claim a refund.
They then took it to Lower Hutt, where they were offered a smaller replacement model, before leaving with both units.
Noanoa's offending included:
Fraudulently taking $9490 worth of electronics from a Dick Smith store in Lower Hutt.
Falsely ordering $21,624 of goods from Bond and Bond in Lower Hutt.
Taking $726 of alcohol from The Mill in Upper Hutt.
Taking two laptops worth $1800 from Warehouse Stationery in Petone.
Stealing $140 of petrol and oil from a Lower Hutt Mobil station.
Falsely ordering two televisions from Farmers in Queensgate, worth $3000.
Claiming $4913 of goods from shops around Lower Hutt using a falsely-obtained credit card.
- © Fairfax NZ News