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Danny Noonan, ex-AFL player, stole $2.5m from financial planning clients to fund gambling

ABC News logo ABC News 23/06/2017

Noonan stole from clients to gamble or cover his tracks. © ABC News Noonan stole from clients to gamble or cover his tracks. In a staggering fall from grace, a former Tasmanian football star has been jailed for taking $2.5 million (NZ$2,598,000) from friends and business clients to fund his gambling addiction.

Daniel Joseph Noonan, 48, pleaded guilty to 107 counts of fraudulently misappropriating, or stealing, sums of money ranging from $10,000 to $650,000 from 14 clients.

The former Brisbane AFL player gambled the funds supplied by clients through his financial planning company, accredited by AMP Financial, and covered his tracks over nine years.

Noonan hung his head as the Supreme Court in Hobart was told he confessed his crimes to police after an unsuccessful suicide attempt in 2016.

It prompted a full police investigation revealing Noonan had begun by defrauding his close friend John Richmond of $80,000 in 2007. In sentencing, Justice Stephen Estcourt considered that AMP Financial had committed to compensating each fraud victim.

Yet he added that Noonan lied to hide his gambling habit and covered his tracks by moving funds around, therefore the breach of trust was significant.

Justice Estcourt said although Noonan displayed genuine remorse and believed he would repay the money, the impact on the victims had to be taken into account.

He sentenced Noonan to six-and-a-half years in jail with a minimum sentence of just over three years.

The jail sentence was no relief for the son of one of Noonan's victims, Greg Casimaty.

He said Noonan had taken nearly half-a-million dollars from his mother Marian Casimaty, 84, and AMP Financial had not yet offered her a cent of compensation.

"It's the uncertainty that has caused her eternal grief," Mr Casimaty said.

"She can't do anything, she's scared to go to the supermarket." Noonan twice won the prestigious Tasmanian William Leitch Medal in 1995 and 1996 for being the best and fairest player in the statewide league.

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