Updated on September 7, 2020.
A one-time legitimate finance broker with an exceptional track-record made headlines for her property investment scheme that defrauded 24 investors of approximately 4.2 million dollars.
District Court Judge Gillian Braddock heard Catherine Thompson’s case after the broker faced arrest following a raid on her business, Mortgage Miracles located on Ranford Road in Canning Vale.
Detectives at the raid found sufficient evidence to hold Thompson in relation to the wrong-doing. Thompson’s scheme robbed 24 people, many who were elderly and some who also attended church with Thompson.
Catherine Thompson was once a legitimate top investment broker in Western Australia who earned nearly $60,000 a month. Many interested parties asked the question of how a person experiencing such a high degree of success could suddenly become a predator robbing individuals of their life’s savings and forcing some of them into foreclosure?
Attorney Richard Lawson of Lawson Legal was Thompson’s defence counsel, and he shed some light on Catherine Thompson’s criminal activities.
- The first point Attorney Lawson made is the fact that Thompson has a mental disorder known as a narcissistic personality disorder, also called NPD. One of the hallmarks of NPD is the afflicted person’s inability to empathise with others. In her dealings with the 24 clients, Thompson had no empathy.
- Attorney Lawson reasons that Thompson’s disorder led her to believe she was a star in the investment world and everything she touched would turn out to be a success. This explains why Thompson continued to try and recruit people for a business venture doomed to fail.
- Another important point made by Attorney Lawson is that NPD contributed to Thompson’s drive to succeed and grandiose behaviour. Lawson contends that Thompson’s actions were not predatory or driven by greed.
Ultimately, Thompson received a five- year jail sentence that carries a minimum of three years and one month.
District Court Judge Gillian Braddock believes the worst part of Thompson’s behaviour was the ‘devastating’ impact it had on her victims. Judge Braddock said that the victims of the investment scheme could not afford to lose their money but that the plan also destroyed families in its wake.