Jail term held back
A Baldivis woman who made false dental claims and defrauded HBF out of more than $45,000 has narrowly avoided being sent to jail.
Lolita Frances Hall appeared in the Rockingham Magistrate’s Court on Monday to face sentencing for the offences.
The court was previously told that over a three-year period between September 2015 and February 2019 Hall submitted 34 claims to HBF for dental procedures at three separate dentists, however all of these claims were fake.
Amounts claimed ranged from $51 up to $3995, with the total amount she received reaching $45,790.
Hall had been employed as a receptionist at a dental surgery from 2011-2012 and was aware of the layout of dental claim forms, using this knowledge to take advantage of the system.
Prosecutors said the offending came to light after HBF investigators noticed the “unusually high” number of claims coming from Hall.
Magistrate Vivien Edwards said the offending was “calculated and organised”, and that Hall would have been sent to jail had she not been battling a serious medical disorder.
At a previous appearance, Hall’s lawyer said she was “remorseful, ashamed and embarrassed” about her actions, but the offending had come at a time when she was struggling with both her health and finances.
Hall was sentenced to 15 months jail, which was suspended for 18 months.
The court was told that Hall is currently paying the money back to HBF in instalments.
She was also ordered to pay $205.30 in court costs.
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