Former travel agent Arthur Zacharias will await sentencing behind bars


A former travel agent who operated a Ponzi scheme which defrauded the owners, clients and a former Hells Angel bikie boss has had his bail revoked ahead of sentencing, according to The Advertiser.

Arthur Zacharias appeared in Adelaide’s District Court on Thursday where victims delivered impact statements describing his deceit as cruel and morally reprehensible.

The 49-year-old of Parkside previously pleaded guilty to multiple dishonesty and deception offences including 19 counts of dishonestly dealing with property without consent between December 2014 and May 2016 at Fullarton.

He committed the offences while contracted to Axis Travel Centre, which he later sought to part purchase from owner Max Najar – using a silent partner – for $385,000.

Max Najar, owner of Axis Travel, said Zacharias used the company’s name to defraud clients, Photo: Travel Weekly

The silent partner, former interstate Hells Angels member Peter Sidirourgos, had paid the money to Zacharias in instalments, but the court heard Zacharias spent “nearly all” of that money and only about $100,000 was passed on to Mr Najar.

Mr Najar, the main victim of the offences, told the court how Zacharias’ “orchestrated and cruel” deceit had stolen almost five years of his life and ruined his proud company.

He said Zacharias had repeatedly begged to be employed and he gave him a second chance, employing him as a contractor.

Mr Najar told the court he felt humiliated and embarrassed by Zacharias’ crimes which resulted in significant financial trauma amounting to more than $596,894 as well as lost time and health issues.

Judge Simon Stretton will sentence Zacharias next month.

Source: The Advertiser




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