A 21-year-old Austrian worker from the district of Scheibbs was convicted of two months in prison, 18 months of house arrest, and three years of drug and gambling counseling over multiple counts of fraud, drug use, and theft.
The Regional Court of St. Pölten gave a somewhat relaxed sentence to the young man upon hearing a full confession from the defendant, represented by attorney Martin Engelbrecht. The case in which the 21-year-old was involved could’ve carried a maximum sentence of 10 years.
Gambling addiction and drugs, predominantly cannabis, would have tempted the young man in 2014 to order 30 banknotes of twenty euros for the low sum of 120 real euros. In 2018 he ordered 20 banknotes of fifty euros and tried to pay a bar bill with some of the fake money. The attentive bartender recognized the counterfeit cash and called the police.
Following his arrest and trial, the defendant decided to admit to every wrongdoing from his past. He confessed to having found and stole the wallet of a guest at his workplace, breaking-and-entering into his employer’s office in June of 2016, buying marijuana with dark web fake euros, paying for products and services with counterfeit money, and commercial fraud against two acquaintances and a computer online retailer for a total of just under 10 thousand euros. The comprehensive and sincere confessions convinced the jury of his remorse and decided to judge him on the forgiving side.
On top of his sentence, the culprit has to pay back 8,450 euros to the two acquaintances that he had tricked into giving him money with the pretext of investing them into an allegedly successful bitcoin business. He also has to pay back 450 euros to an online computer retailer for the unpaid purchase of a computer. A device that was ultimately re-sold by the defendant for the sum of 400 euros. The court added 250 euros to be paid to the shipping company which also incurred expenses.