Mayor had pattern of 'sophisticated' offending: Prosecutor

ANDREW Antoniolli used his position of trust to continue a sophisticated and deliberate pattern of offending for about 12 years, an Ipswich court has heard.

Antoniolli, supported by his wife and daughters, appeared in Ipswich Magistrates Court today to be sentenced for 12 counts of fraud and one of attempted fraud.

The former mayor, however, faces an anxious wait after Magistrate Anthony Gett reserved his sentence until 9.30am on August 9.

Mr Gett heard the sentencing submissions of the prosecution and defence.

Antoniolli bought auction items using Ipswich City Council money worth $10,300 between August 2005 and November 2017.

Crown Prosecutor Sarah Farnden, in her sentencing submission to Mr Gett, said Antoniolli only stopped offending when he knew the Crime and Corruption Commission was investigating.

"A significant motivating factor was to increase and maintain his popularity within the community," she said.

"He was in a position of significant trust which enabled the offending conduct to go unquestioned.

"The offending went undetected until the CCC were investigating other matters.

"They were therefore sophisticated offences."

Ms Farnden suggested a head sentence of 12-18 months be imposed, with an actual term of imprisonment served.

She acknowledged charities were not defrauded and Antoniolli did not benefit significantly from the offending.

"I accept this isn't a case where there is that direct personal gain," she said.

 

Defence barrister Peter Callaghan tabled written submissions to Mr Gett and said Antoniolli did not line his own pockets through his offending.

"The money still went to the destination for which it was ultimately intended," he said.

"It must be crucial on the question of penalty."

Mr Callaghan disputed the claim Antoniolli was motivated by increasing his popularity and said there was "no prospect of re-offending in any way".

Mr Callaghan said a career in real estate was Antoniolli's "only way forward" to rebuild a comparable life to the one he had.

That potential might be put in jeopardy with Mr Gett's sentencing, the court heard.

"There is significance to the recording of a conviction," Mr Callaghan said.

At several moments the former mayor appeared to privately pray while sitting at the bench with his defence team.

Antoniolli was bailed to re-appear in Ipswich Magistrates Court on August 9.