Devout 86 year old victim unable to pray Lord’s Prayer

Lord's Prayer

A conman with fraud on his mind has left his devout 86-year-old victim unable to pray the Lord’s Prayer.

Elizabeth Risk says the line “Forgive us our trespasses” has stuck in her throat throat ever since Nigel Thompson (pictured) befriended her at her retirement village and emptied her bank account.

He conned $20,000 from her.

Risk, a widow and devout Christian, says she can’t say the Lord’s Prayer. She can’t forgive Thompson but prays one day she will be able to.

Thompson appeared for sentencing in the Christchurch District Court in July.

He had pleaded guilty to multiple charges of theft, deception and tax fraud. Most charges related to events between 2015 and 2019.

Judge Mark Callaghan sentenced him to three years and seven months’ jail, reduced by 10 months for time served on remand.

He also refused Thompson’s request for name suppression.

Callaghan banned Thompson from managing a company for five years.

Thompson is appealing his sentence.

At the High Court in Christchurch on Thursday, Justice Anne Hinton confirmed Thompson’s name suppression was no longer in place.

She also reserved her decision on his appeal against his sentence.

How the fraud occurred

Risk met Thompson in March 2019.

Calling himself John, Thompson placed an ad for car grooming services at Lady Isaac Retirement Village.

He and his two boys quickly formed a relationship with her.

They visited her and she bought the boys gifts and cooked meals for them.

She also lent Thompson $6000.

After a trip to Melbourne, Risk was shocked to find she had nothing in her bank account.

Thompson was concerned and sympathetic.

Phone calls from a person who claimed he was from the bank’s head office followed. That person claimed he was sorting out her loss. He told her not to bother her local bank.

Eventually, Risk discovered Thompson had used her bank card and PIN. He also pretended to be a head office bank staff member.

She was shocked and devastated he had used his children to foster trust and was left wondering if she could trust anyone.

Thomson’s dishonesty destroyed her relationship with the boys, leaving her feeling “used and betrayed”.

The conman had also pressured her in emails not to pursue the matter with the police.

Over time he paid back the money.

Fraud an ongoing method

Many of Thompson’s other fraudulent crimes related to his time as a car dealer.

Others involved defrauding the IRD of about $287,000 meant for PAYE and Kiwi Saver, and claiming multiple income tax refunds.

He also ripped off a church.

In 2019, Thompson worked and volunteered for the Celebration Church and its car dealership Gateway. His dishonesty incurred losses of $34,000.

Crown counsel Sean Mallett said it appeared Thompson had a sense of entitlement and did not accept responsibility for his offending.

Judge Callaghan said the offending was linked to Thompson wanting to maintain a successful business facade.

Thompson used the money to support his gambling addiction.

Thompson could not claim his offending was mitigated by his previous good character because he had 125 previous convictions for dishonesty charges between 1991 and 2002.


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News category: New Zealand.