We previously reported on the case of 44-year old Silvia Schreuder who, along with 42-year old Jason Hall, was charged with larceny and fraud offences after stealing 62-year old aged care nurse Kay Shaylor’s handbag as she lay in a critical condition after a car accident.
The collision occurred when Mr Shaylor’s vehicle was hit by 20-year-old suspended Learner driver, Bianca Harrington, who was allegedly driving on the wrong side of the road in September 2016.
Mrs Shaylor suffered multiple injuries as a result of the crash. She was airlifted to hospital but later died.
Ms Harrington was charged with dangerous driving occasioning death and driving while suspended. She allegedly told police after the crash that she had smoked “five bongs” the previous night.
In what police describe as “one of the lowest acts” they have ever seen, Ms Schreuder and Mr Hall acted as if they were helping Mrs Shaylor but instead took her bag and used her credit cards to buy food, cigarettes and a fishing rod in the days following the nurse’s death.
Mr Hall was charged with 15 offences, including 10 counts of fraud and one count each of assault and intimidation. Police say he had three outstanding warrants at the time of the incident.
Hall was refused bail and later pleaded to several of the offences. He is yet to be sentenced.
Ms Schreuder pleaded guilty to larceny and fraud, and her matter was listed for sentencing before Magistrate Barnett in Gosford Local Court yesterday.
During the sentencing, the magistrate noted that Mrs Shaylor was “as vulnerable as one can be” when her handbag was stolen.
His Honour said to the defendant, “every time you have to put your hand in your pocket, you can think about that poor lady”.
However, he found that Mrs Schreuder’s act of defrauding Mrs Shaylor was at the lower end of the scale and ultimately imposed a 3 year ‘section 9’ good behaviour bond and a fine of $700.
Both the bond and fine come with criminal convictions.
Section 9 Bonds
Section 9 of the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act 1999 (‘the Act’) provides that instead of imposing a sentence of imprisonment, a court can make an order directing the offender to enter into a good behaviour bond for a term of 5 years or less.
Section 9 bonds are different to those under ‘section 10 dismissal or conditional release order‘ as the former come with a criminal conviction and can last for up to 5 years, whereas section 10 bonds (now conditional release order without conviction) do not come with a criminal conviction and can only last for up to 2 years.
Under section 95 of the Act, all bonds must contain a condition that the offender is to be of ‘good behaviour’ – which means they are not to commit any further criminal offences for the duration of the bond.
If they commit another crime, they can be called back to court and re-sentenced for the original offence, and the fact they were on the bond at the time of the fresh offence will be considered an ‘aggravating factor’ – in other words, something which can make the offending conduct more serious for the purpose of any sentencing proceeding.
Good behaviour bonds can also come with a range of other conditions, including receiving the supervision of community corrections and complying with their directions. However, bonds cannot require a person to perform community service or pay a fine or compensation.
In Ms Schreuder’s case, the $700 fine was imposed for a separate offence, which is permissible under the law.