You would think the people in and around Rappville have had enough to deal with in the last few weeks so it comes as a shock that someone would try to rip them off – police say a man has been charged with fraud and impersonating an emergency services officer by police yesterday.
At 12.30pm yesterday, officers attached to the Richmond Target Action Group, in the company of a Richmond Valley Council Ranger, attended premises on Nanadabah Street in Rappville, south of Casino, and spoke with a 58-year-old man.
Police had been told the man arrived in Rappville on Wednesday October 16 – and some weeks after fire devastated the town – and took up residency in a local showground in his vehicle.
It is alleged that the man received relief aid in the form of free stock feed, food packages and clothing donations from registered organisations.
On Friday October 25 police then received information that the same man was allegedly posing as a NSW Fire Brigade Officer at a local community meeting.
On Wednesday 6 November 2019, police received further information that the man was offering residents his help to clean up the town and allegedly demanding money for the work.
Following investigations, police arrested a 58-year-old man at the Nanadabah Street premises and seized items, including uniforms of various emergency services.
The man has been charged with impersonate emergency services organisation officer, dishonestly obtain property by deception and goods in personal custody suspected being stolen.
He was granted conditional bail to appear before Casino Local Court on Thursday December 5.
The man was also served with a formal direction by rangers to immediately cease squatting and also conducting non-charitable business in the town.