Newlyweds charged over Australia Post scam
Dannielle and Damien Butler were united in holy matrimony last year and now she's joined him in facing up to 20 years jail if convicted over an alleged multimillion-dollar fake Australia Post satchel scam.
In July, police accused 30-year-old Damien Butler and three others of being involved in a criminal syndicate that had imported 2.3 tonnes of bogus Express Post and Parcel Post prepaid bags from China between September 2018 and June last year.
According to the Australian Federal Police's claims, the dodgy packaging was then sold on eBay, denying AusPost about $2 million in sales.
The Daily Telegraph can reveal Dannielle Butler has become the fifth person charged. She has indicated she will defend the charges.
In court documents, police allege the 28-year-old "did deal with money or other property believed to be proceeds of crime, and at the time of the dealing, the value of money and other property was $100,000 or more, contrary to 400.4(1) of the Criminal Code".
That offence carries a maximum jail term of 20 years if proven.
She is also accused of dishonestly intending "to cause a loss to another person and the other person is a Commonwealth entity, contrary to section 135.1(3) of the Criminal Code".
The penalty for breaching that section is up to 10 years prison.
Her husband has been charged with the same offences. Police allege he dishonestly caused a loss to AusPost of $478,000.
The Butlers married in May 2019 at Terrey Hills' Miramere Gardens, departing the lavish ceremony in a Maserati.
Their co-accused, Brody Levi Cooper, was one of the groomsmen.
At the time of the wedding, the AFP was early in its 15-month investigation.
The Butlers were not required to appear when their matters came before Parramatta Local Court last Friday.
The Daily Telegraph sought comment from them by visiting the Rossmore address recorded on their court files.
But a person at the residence and a neighbour said the Butlers moved out a few weeks ago.
Damien's lawyer Rylie Hahn said her client was "not required to enter any plea" yet.
She would not comment further.
Dannielle's lawyer Beth Rumore told The Telegraph "the matters are being defended."
Ms Rumore said she had yet to receive a brief of evidence from the police.
She said Dannielle was "the least connected to the rest of the fellows charged."
It is unclear how the Butlers and Cooper, 27, of Lethbridge Park, knew their two co-accused, Dylan Zachy Mottlee of Richmond, 27, and 33-year-old Carmen Gratiela 'Grace' Copoceanu from Blacktown.
Cooper, whose case also came before Parramatta Local Court on Friday, declined to comment afterwards.
None of the five has been charged with being part of a criminal syndicate, despite the AFP making that allegation in a news release.
The cases against all five are due to return to Parramatta court in later January after briefs have been served.
Originally published as Newlyweds charged over Australia Post scam