Ex-UK cop lied to gain $450k Vic govt jobs

·2-min read

A former policeman who created a fake university and lied about his work and education history to gain high-paid Victorian government jobs has been spared a jail term.

Peter Ravenscroft worked as a police officer in the United Kingdom until he migrated to Australia with his family in 2007.

Over five years, the 56-year-old "blatantly lied" to secure employment in a number of jobs, including one where he earned more than $450,000, the Victorian County Court heard on Wednesday.

Ravenscroft, who pleaded guilty to obtaining financial advantage by deception, claimed he was Detective Inspector for the UK National Crime Squad, when in reality he was a Detective Constable at Sussex Police.

He told prospective employers he was a Leeds University fellow, held a Bachelor of Education from Aston University, and had two diplomas from Guildford University, which does not exist.

He also forged certificates of commendation and training from Sussex Police.

The fake history helped him gain employment at the Department of Treasury and Finance and Frankston City Council, where he was paid $456,038 as compliance and safety manager.

He then moved to the Victorian Ombudsman, where he earned $196,857, after creating a fake referee named "Dr John Marshall" who he said supervised him at Frankston Council.

Judge Angela Ellis said the lies were "probably entirely unnecessary", since he performed well in some roles and was a highly decorated UK police officer.

"Deceiving prospective employers with such blatant and calculated lies is appalling behaviour indeed," she said.

"You clearly have been able to perform at least one of those roles more than capably, which is what makes your offending all the more inexplicable."

Ravenscroft was convicted and handed a two-year community corrections order. He must perform 180 hours of unpaid community work and undergo mental health treatment and rehabilitation.

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