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David Fifita’s wife avoids jail for Centrelink rorts

The wife of former rugby league player David Fifita will not spend a day in jail despite fraudulently pocketing almost $50,000 from Centrelink.

Jade Robinson, AKA Jade Fifita, claimed to be a struggling single mum when in fact her husband was earning $160,000 a year playing for the Cronulla Sharks.

The 26-year-old used the $48,500 in payments over five years from 2011 to buy clothes and a new car to ‘keep up with the other WAGs’.

Jade Robinson, the wife of former NRL player David Fifita will not spend a day in jail despite fraudulently pocketing almost $50,000 from Centrelink

The wife of former NRL player David Fifita has been jailed for eight months for defrauding Centrelink of almost $50,000

Jade Fifita (right), the wife of former NRL player David Fifita (left), has been jailed for eight months for defrauding Centrelink of $50,000 in order to 'keep up with other WAGs'

She claimed to be a struggling single mum when in fact her husband was earning $160,000 a year playing for the Cronulla Sharks 

She was in November sentenced to eight months jail after pleading guilty to two counts of receiving financial advantage from a Commonwealth entity.

But magistrate Jennifer Price gave her home detention, despite the consistent and persistent way she had greedily rorted the system at taxpayers’ expense.

Ms Price told Gosford Local Court on Thursday said she would exercise her discretion and allow Robinson to serve her sentence at home.

The case had been adjourned after the November sentencing so suitability for home detention could be considered.

The 26-year-old used the $48,500 in payments over five years from 2011 to buy clothes and a new car to 'keep up with the other WAGs' 

The 26-year-old used the $48,500 in payments over five years from 2011 to buy clothes and a new car to ‘keep up with the other WAGs’ 

The 26-year-old lied about her relationship status to Centrelink, telling them she was a single mother renting in Bankstown, west Sydney, with her young children

The 26-year-old lied about her relationship status to Centrelink, telling them she was a single mother renting in Bankstown, west Sydney, with her young children

Fifita claimed her first single-parent payment in September 2011 and continued to receive benefits until May 2016.

She was living with her husband and two children during the period, but told Centrelink she was a single mother renting a home in Bankstown, Western Sydney.

The couple married in late 2014, but between 2011 and 2016, she reportedly ticked a box on Centrelink forms saying she was ‘never married or lived with a partner’.

During that period, she and her husband even appeared on the NRL Footy Show to discuss their relationship. 

Robinson briefly stopped claiming the payments for a few months in 2013 when she lived in France where Fifita was playing rugby league for French club Lezignan.

David Fifita (pictured), who previously played for the Cronulla Sharks in the NRL as well as in France and England, has not been charged

David Fifita (pictured), who previously played for the Cronulla Sharks in the NRL as well as in France and England, has not been charged

By ticking a box on Centrelink forms saying that said she was 'never married or lived with a partner', Mrs Fifita (nee Robinson) raked in $48,507.52

By ticking a box on Centrelink forms saying that said she was ‘never married or lived with a partner’, Mrs Fifita (nee Robinson) raked in $48,507.52

The WAG had her payments reinstated on their return to Sydney in June 2013, despite her husband signing with NRL club Cronulla.

David Fifita now plays for Wakefield Trinity in the English Super League and was given time off from pre-2018 season training to be with his family over the Christmas-New Year period before his wife’s court appearance. 

A psychological report found Robinson had ‘a personality profile that reflected a lack of maturity’ and an ‘inability to extricate herself out of the situation she had caused herself to be in’.

The report stated she ‘felt the competition to clothe her children… buy a new car and to keep up with others in social activities’.

However, she had no narcissistic or antisocial indicators and showed good prospects of rehabilitation.

The court previously heard she joked with her husband about the fraudulent claims even when she was concerned about their finances.  

Text messages (pictured) discovered on the couple's phones during a police raid on their home in Sutherland, an hour south of Sydney, revealed they were worried about money

Text messages (pictured) discovered on the couple’s phones during a police raid on their home in Sutherland, an hour south of Sydney, revealed they were worried about money

A psych report found Robinson had 'a personality profile that reflected a lack of maturity' and an 'inability to extricate herself out of the situation she had caused herself to be in'

A psych report found Robinson had ‘a personality profile that reflected a lack of maturity’ and an ‘inability to extricate herself out of the situation she had caused herself to be in’

Text messages found on their phones during a police raid on the couple’s home in Sutherland, south of Sydney, in May last year revealed they were worried about money.

‘I just transferred $250.00 make it last the day babe. I really thought we had more money than that,’ Robinson wrote in one message.

Her husband replied: ‘That’s heaps babe lol text you soon. Remember you get paid Tuesday x love you were fin (sic).’

When she replied that she gets paid the following week, he responded: ‘No Centrelink lol. Haha.’

David Fifita, twin brother of Cronulla star Andrew Fifita, was not charged with any crime and there was no suggestion of any wrongdoing by him. 

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