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The estate agent warned the employee that he "will pay" for reporting fraud suspects, the court said


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November 2018 22:21:33

The Darwinian real estate agent, who was accused of fraud, warned the younger employee that he would "pay" for reporting his suspicions as headquarters and that "it was not in the spirit of the Aussie mateship," the court has heard.

Key points:

  • Chris Deutrom is being judged about a possible redistribution of promotional gifts on his personal account
  • Mr Deutrom warned his colleague that he "will pay" for reporting suspicions of fraud, the court said
  • NT News's head manager deletes the advertising contract after Deutrom's request

Chris Deutrom is being judged about the possible redirection of NT News and realestate.com.au to their personal accounts in 2015 and 2016 when he led the Elder Darwin Real Estate Office.

At that time, Matthew Pullman was an agency sales assistant and also cleaned the office for hours.

Mr Pulman spoke to the jury that he noticed that one of the advertisers was dismissed by Deutrom's personal business account, Deutrom Pty Ltd, and that he had informed the head office.

"It caused suspicion that something was wrong," he said.

He told the jury that Deutrom repeatedly dragged him into "aggressive" talks when Elder's leadership began to ask questions.

"There was one comment that I should only f *** return to England if I were unhappy," Pullman said.

"I did not understand the spirit of the Aussie mateship.

"He essentially said that he would find out who told the head office and that they would pay for what they would like to do."

Mr Pullman said that Deutrom reiterated that he was incompetent and that he should be punished.

"He continued to say that no branch really liked me … and that he would know everyone that I was the one who fell in love with him," he said.

"He repeated that he would receive constant complaints about me, he said almost daily."

At Deutrom's request, the advertising agreement was deleted

Afterwards, the court heard testimony from NT News Director General Greg Thompson, who said that he had a "business" relationship with Deutrom and that Deutrom's wife, Helena, was the senior management of the newspaper.

Mr Thomson told the court that Deutrom was asking him to delete the advertising contract, which was on behalf of Deutrom Pty Ltd.

"Deutrom told you he was" f ***** up, "prosecutor David Mortes SC suggested to Thomson.

Mr Thomson agreed and acknowledged that one of the two agreements, at the request of Mr Deutrom, was deleted.

"We erased one to make sure we have one Elder account," he said.

Mr Thomson initially agreed to Mortters' suggestion that Elder's management contacted NT News before Deutroma's request to withdraw the contract.

Thomson said that he could not remember whether this was done before or after the senior contacts with NT News, during a criminal trial at the Deutroman Attorney Jon Tippet.

"I do not remember whether this conversation took place before NT News contacted the Elder corporation," he said.

Mr Tippett told the court that the initiation of any "secrecy" was wrong.

Mr Deutrom added that he did not blame eight charges of fraudulent gain of $ 234,000 worth of rebates.

The case of the prosecutor's office is now closed, and the trial will continue on Thursday.


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