An Illawarra disability carer banned from using the internet amid allegations she defrauded tens of thousands of dollars from a Sydney business owner will be allowed back into cyberspace.
Jennifer Therese Smith, 58, successfully argued in Wollongong Local Court on Thursday to be granted access to the world wide web - under the supervision of her legal representative - to prepare her defence against four dishonesty charges.
Police allege Smith was behind an online scam that saw a 61-year-old man scammed out of almost $45,000.
Documents tendered in court said the victim had multiple commercial properties in the management of a Silverwater real estate agent during 2018 and drew rental incomes from them to support himself.
In February that year, Smith allegedly sent an email to the estate agent saying all future rental payments for a property at Wetherill Park were to be paid into her St George Bank account.
The agent, believing he was communicating with the 61-year-old businessman, changed the bank details accordingly, police said.
The agent transferred $14,314 into the new account on March 5. It is alleged Smith attended ATMs and banks in the Shellharbour area over the following two days and withdrew $8,500 across five transactions.
Police will allege the estate agent transferred another $14,314 to Smith's account in April, and $15,423 to her in May, each time believing he was making the payments to his client.
Court documents say Smith's bank records allegedly reveal she withdrew large amounts of money from banks and ATMs after receiving the cash.
The victim and the real estate agent became aware of the missing money on May 16 and reported the matter to police.
Detectives from Fairfield launched an investigation. They claim they made several attempts to speak with her however she allegedly tried to avoid them, at one stage travelling to Newcastle when they'd said they were coming to her house.
She was eventually arrested at Fairfield Police Station in February and charged with three counts of dishonestly obtaining a financial advantage by deception and one count of using a false document to obtain a financial advantage.
The case will return to court for hearing in December.