Australian woman jailed for scamming money by pretending to have cancer

Hanna Dickenson falsely claimed to have cancer a court heard. AGENCIES

Describing her offence as "despicable", a court in the state of Victoria sentenced Dickenson, now a real estate agent, to three months in jail, 150 hours of community work and treatment for mental health issues and substance abuse.

Hanna's parents handed over money to their daughter but when it wasn't enough, they then went to family friends and requested thousands of dollars to help with Hanna's treatment. "Camara assured them that everything was normal and that they had no need to see a doctor", the report said.

It is virtually impossible to fathom how the parents must have felt upon hearing the situation when Hanna pleaded guilty in the Melbourne magistrates' court.

According to the Australian news site news.com.au, Dickenson was 19 when she first lied to her parents, saying that she had six months to live and was in palliative care.

The family's neighbors, Nathan and Rachel Cue, also helped with money and were victims of the scam.

Dickenson had "engaged in conduct that tears at the very heartstrings of human nature", magistrate David Starvaggi said during her sentencing, the BBC reported.

Dickenson told her parents she was severely ill with leiomyosarcoma, and not responding to treatments at Epworth and Peter MacCallum hospitals.

A witness told police, however, that she saw the victim running away from Mann and Mann tearing the bag of clothes that she was carrying.

However, Dickenson spent the donations on parties, alcohol, drugs and overseas holidays.

He has now been given until May 14 to pay the sum of £22,000 to his victims.

Ms Lindsay argued that her client's offending was less severe than Gibson's.

The suspect, identified by police as 33-year-old Kevin Mann, denied hitting the woman but said he was chasing her to get her phone, which he said belonged to him.

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