Media release: NSW (Fizelle) – Bankrupt convicted for disposing of money before becoming bankrupt

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Ms Jodie May Fizelle of Mount Warrigal, New South Wales, was sentenced on 27 September 2018 at the Wollongong Local Court for disposing of a large sum of money in the weeks before she became bankrupt.

In 2011 and again in 2013, Workers Compensation Nominal Insurer (‘WCN Insurer’) took action to seek payment of money owed by Ms Fizelle for unpaid insurance premiums, costs and insurance. The total owed was $17,228.27.

In 2013, Ms Fizelle sold a property in Dapto for $255,000.

On 8 January 2014, a Bankruptcy Notice was served on Ms Fizelle.

In January and February 2014, Ms Fizelle made an offer to WCN Insurer’s legal representative to finalise her debt.

The first offer was $7,000 and the second offer was $9,750.

Ms Fizelle indicated that was all she was able to repay without going bankrupt.

On the same day, she withdrew $79,000 in cash from her bank account. This was the remaining balance received from the sale of her property.

It is an offence to dispose of money in an attempt to hide it from a bankruptcy trustee and prevent it being available to repay creditors.

Ms Fizelle was officially made bankrupt in June 2014 by order of the court.

On 27 September 2018, she was convicted and sentenced to a two year Community Correction Order and ordered to perform 200 hours of community service work.

Magistrate Stoddart remarked that the offending was serious and was a deliberate effort to get around the bankruptcy rules.

The matter was prosecuted by the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions on behalf of the Australian Financial Security Authority.

Key details:

  • Ms Jodie May Fizelle of Mount Warrigal, New South Wales, was sentenced on 27 September 2018 at the Wollongong Local Court for disposing of money within 14 weeks before becoming bankrupt.
  • A default Judgment of $4,025.32 was entered against Ms Fizelle on 25 October 2011, on a claim filed on behalf of Workers Compensation Nominal Insurer (“WCN Insurer”).
  • On 31 May 2013, Ms Fizelle sold her DAPTO NSW property for $255,000 and received net funds of $238,946.60.
  • A 2nd default Judgment of $13,202.98 was entered against Ms Fizelle on 30 August 2013, on another claim filed on behalf of WCN Insurer.
  • On 8 January 2014, a Bankruptcy Notice was personally served on Ms Fizelle. The balance of her ANZ account at the time was $79,389.49.
  • On 5 February 2014, Ms Fizelle contacted WCN Insurer’s legal representative offering $9,750 to finalise the debt. On the same day, she withdrew $79,000 in cash from her bank account which was the remaining balance she received from the sale of her property in May 2013.  
  • Ms Fizelle was made bankrupt on 17 June 2014 by order of the court.