19 Apr 2008

Australian conman Peter Foster loses appeal against his sentence

10:36 am on 19 April 2008

Australian conman Peter Foster has lost an appeal to have his jail time for money laundering reduced.

Foster, 45, of the Gold Coast, was sentenced to four-and-a-half years jail in December after pleading guilty in the Supreme Court to a money laundering charge.

He is eligible for parole after two years and three months.

The charge related to Foster bringing more than $US200,000 into Australia, which he fraudulently obtained from the Bank of the Federated State of Micronesia.

During the original hearing, the court was told Foster, who has previous convictions for fraud, took out a $US541,499 loan in 2006 to develop a Fijian tourist resort, but instead used $US286,408 of it to pay credit card debt and outstanding rent on his girlfriend's Gold Coast home.

Last month, Foster's barrister requested a reduction in Foster's jail term, arguing the judge had sentenced on the basis of incorrect facts and that a reparation order to pay back $US199,794 should be set aside.

But a Queensland Court of Appeal judgment yesterday found the sentence was not excessive considering Foster's long history of offences of dishonesty in many countries.