Hunter woman charged over alleged bushfire grant fraud

A Hunter woman is one of four who have been charged this week over alleged bushfire grant fraud.

In August last year, detectives from the State Crime Command’s Raptor Squad established Strike Force Fireant to investigate outlaw motorcycle gang members (OMCG) and associates allegedly being involved in obtaining fraudulent funds through the NSW Government’s Small Business Bushfire Support Grants program.

Over the last year, 20 people have been charged and remain before the courts.

Raptor Squad investigators arrested another four people, two men and two women, this week at four properties in Raworth, Shalvey and Seven Hills yesterday.

A 29-year-old Raworth woman – who is a Gladiators OMCG associate – was charged with five counts of dishonestly obtain financial advantage by deception.

She was granted strict conditional bail to appear at Maitland Local Court in January next year.

A 31-year-old woman and 26-year-old man – both from Shalvey – were each charged with dishonestly obtain financial advantage by deception.

During the execution of a search warrant at Seven Hills, officers located and seized a knife, cannabis, and white powder believed to be cocaine, and arrested and charged a 30-year-old man.

He was granted strict conditional bail and is due to appear in court next year.

Investigations are continuing.

Anyone with information that may assist investigators is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or Information is treated in strict confidence.