2 Sep 2015

Teacher at top school admits fraud

7:34 am on 2 September 2015

A former teacher at one of Auckland's top schools has admitted using the identity of his colleagues, as well as a missing man, to get credit cards in their names and rack up thousands in debt.

Rafe Callum Fannin, 36, who taught at Auckland Grammar, appeared at the Auckland District Court yesterday where he admitted five charges of obtaining by deception and seven of using a document for pecuniary advantage.

According to the police summary of facts, Fannin used Facebook to get the personal details of Jamie Stephen Herdman.

Mr Herdman disappeared in the Australian Northern Territory in 2006, the ABC reported. Police said Fannin, an accounting and economics teacher, used Mr Herdman's details to get a driver's license. But instead of a photo of Mr Herdman, he included one of himself.

auckland grammar

Rafe Callum Fannin defrauded colleagues at Auckland Grammar. Photo: Wikicommons

Fannin then applied to the BNZ for a visa credit card; on which $789 is still owed.

He later approached Kiwibank and got a second card on which he racked up $3515. Fannin did the same with ANZ. That account still owes $4075.

But Fannin did not stop there. He also used the identities of his work colleagues.

Police said he took another teacher's driver's license from the man's wallet. He then used the details to apply for a Gem visa card that is still in debt to the tune of $3912. Fannin used the colleague's details to apply for more credit cards from ANZ, Kiwibank and loans from the finance company East Bay finance.

A total of over $34,000 in one colleague's name is owed on the various accounts.

He took a second colleague's driver's license and visited a branch of the SBS Bank where he opened an account.

Fannin used this man's details to get an American Express credit card but used his own contact details on the application to ensure he fielded calls from the company. The current amount owing on that account is over $14950.

At court yesterday Judge Anne Kiernan asked for the possibility of a restorative justice conference to be looked into. That would mean Fannin could talk face-to-face with the colleagues whose identities he used.

Judge Kiernan said an important aspect at sentencing would be just how much money Fannin is able to pay back in reparations. Police are asking for more than $67,000.

Fannin is due to be sentenced next month.

According to the Education Council's register, he still holds a teaching certificate but is not listed as a staff member on the Auckland Grammar website.