20 May 2022

Fraud charges against former Gungahlin United president dismissed, 73 theft charges remain

| Albert McKnight

Aaron David Alexander, 50, leaves court after the majority of charges against him were dismissed on Thursday. Photo: Albert McKnight.

The former president of the Gungahlin United Football Club (GUFC) accused of stealing his own club’s funds has had all fraud charges against him dismissed as well as multiple theft charges.

The hearing against 50-year-old Aaron David Alexander began earlier this year and on Thursday (19 May) Magistrate Glenn Theakston announced his decision on a no case to answer argument.

This generally involves a defendant’s legal team arguing the prosecution case is so weak charges should be dismissed without them presenting a defence.

At the start of the hearing Mr Alexander faced a total of 216 charges. However Magistrate Theakston told the ACT Magistrates Court he would dismiss all 108 primary charges of dishonestly obtaining property by deception, as well as 35 of the 108 back-up charges of theft.

He also amended the wording in each of the 73 remaining charges of theft. It is unclear what the remaining charges specifically allege Mr Alexander has done.

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The magistrate said Mr Alexander’s lawyer, Mr Chen from Legal Aid, could discuss what evidence he wanted to call for the remaining charges. He asked both parties to give him an estimate of the course of the hearing by next week, continued bail and said the hearing would otherwise be adjourned to a date to be fixed.

In opening submissions at the start of the hearing, prosecutor Marcus Dyason alleged Mr Alexander made transactions that were not for the club’s purpose, and he used funds in a way that was inconsistent with his authorisation to do so.

Mr Dyason said shortly after Mr Alexander began his new role, he allegedly convinced the GUFC’s executive to change banks to NAB Gungahlin on the premise he had a good relationship with the branch and sponsorships would likely flow from the move.

“But there was no sponsorship,” former club treasurer Debra Hampson alleged, clarifying there was no sponsorship during her tenure.

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Mr Dyason alleged Mr Alexander was the sole person authorised to access the new bank account. He anticipated the court would hear he refused repeated requests to allow authorisation for other members of the executive.

Mr Alexander has pleaded not guilty. He was president of the club from September 2016 to July 2018.

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