A couple who organised sausage sizzle fundraisers at Bunnings and pocketed thousands of dollars which were meant to go to a Dubbo sporting group have been told to pay up.
Dubbo residents Danielle Miller, 45, and Gregory John French, 50, pleaded guilty to dishonestly obtaining financial advantage by deception when they appeared in court.
In a statement of agreed facts presented in court, police said the pair were in a state of "financial distress" when they defrauded the Dubbo Touch Association (DTA).
Miller and French's deception began after they developed a rapport with Bunnings' social events coordinator. When other community groups cancelled their own planned barbecue events at Bunnings, Miller and French asked to be contacted so they could raise money for the DTA.
In August 2017 Miller and French were told there was a cancellation. They went to Bunnings, put on the sausage sizzle, collected $661.50 from community members and then never banked it in the DTA's account.
The pair went to Bunnings again in September 2017, raised $894 and never banked it.
On a further three occasions in October 2017, Miller and French raised a total of $1927 and never banked it.
After Miller and French collected a total of $3482.50 that was meant to go to the DTA, members of the group's executive committee conducted an audit of fundraising activities.
According to the statement of agreed facts, committee members spoke to French and Miller about their fundraising endeavors and the pair accepted responsibility.
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The pair requested they be allowed to repay the money and the DTA agreed. After $100 was paid back, Miller and French failed to pay back the rest and their crime was reported to police.
"It was evident that [French] had a significant gambling habit and that they were both in financial distress," police said after Miller and French's banking records were examined.
In April 2019 after police visited Miller and French, another request to pay the money back was made but the DTA declined the request.
"This request was made in a self-serving attempt to dissuade the DTA from proceeding formally and was not from an altruistic desire to repay the outstanding money," police said in the statement of agreed facts.
In Dubbo Local Court on Wednesday French said he'd now paid back $600 and was "happy to pay the whole lot".
Magistrate Gary Wilson convicted French and ordered him to pay back money the DTA was still owed.
In July, Miller was sentenced to a 12-month community corrections order which required her to be of good behaviour. She was also ordered to repay the DTA.