Strata director avoids time behind bars after being convicted of fraud

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The director of a strata management company will escape time behind bars depite being convicted of fraud.

Jason Christopher Hext, director of Strataco Strata Pty Ltd, was sentenced to 12 months imprisonment on 8 April 2015, after being found guilty of $67,000 worth of fraud involving the management of seven strata plans.

Hext was convicted of transferring funds out of the strata plans’ individual trust accounts for his own personal use and for the use of his wife.

Hext appealed the severity of his sentence and on 28 July the Parramatta District Court overturned the original sentence of 12 months imprisonment with a non-parole period of seven months.

Instead, Hext was sentenced to 18 months imprisonment, to be served by home detention, with a 12 month non-parole period.

The District Court also confirmed orders which require the defendant to pay $67,609.67 to the Director-General of Property Services Compensation Fund.

NSW Fair Trading Commissioner Rod Stowe said strata managers misappropriating trust account funds would continue to be targeted by the department.

“Consumers living under strata law are entitled to feel confident the significant sums of money they pay to managers to look after their building’s common assets are kept securely in designated trust accounts and the money is used for the intended purposes,” Stowe said, 
 

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