Andrew Stevenson has faced court on numerous dishonesty charges.
Andrew Stevenson has faced court on numerous dishonesty charges.

Alleged fake firefighter granted bail, forced to live in Qld

A KOONORIGAN man accused of pretending to be a NSW Rural Fire Service officer has been granted bail.

Andrew Geoffrey Stevenson, 36, appeared in the dock of Lismore Local Court on Wednesday to apply for bail on several charges against him.

Police will allege Mr Stevenson claimed to be representing the RFS on the Northern Rivers between November 8 and 10.

Mr Stevenson entered pleas of guilty on Wednesday to dishonestly obtaining property by deception, having goods suspected stolen in or on premises, not obtaining a NSW licence within three-months of new residence, wilfully swearing falsely in any affidavit and two counts of publishing false or misleading material to obtain advantage.

He was also charged with attempting to register or renew registration by a false statement, having goods in personal custody suspected of being stolen, knowingly possessing identity plates not on the correct vehicle, dishonestly obtaining financial advantage by deception, impersonating an organisation officer to exercise a function, and two counts of acting or intending to pervert the course of justice but is yet to enter any pleas.

For the second time this month, Mr Stevenson has applied for bail.

However, this time the police prosecutor did not oppose the bail application after a suitable address could be finalised for Mr Stevenson to reside.

"On the first occasion, an address was proposed in the Tabulam area which is an active fire zone," the police prosecutor said.

"The defendant will be moved from the NSW active fire zones to somewhere someone can take care of him.

"While there were concerns in the past, they still exist but these conditions can mitigate these risks."

Magistrate Robyn Denes, who said she remembered dealing with him in similar matters years ago when she was a Department of Public Prosecution prosecutor, granted Mr Stevenson's bail despite having "some reservations".

Mr Stevenson must live with his aunt and mother at home in Kingaroy, Queensland, and report daily to the Kingaroy Police station Monday to Friday.

He must also not to enter NSW unless to appear in court or if he has a legal appointment.

Ms Denes also added the bail condition that Mr Stevenson "must not to be in possession of any items or insignia of any emergency services" of any state, including NSW RFS or contact any prosecution witnesses.

He is expected to be released into the custody of his mother or aunt in Grafton on Thursday.

The matter is listed for January 6 to settle the facts of the case.


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