Susan Falls, who in 2010 provided a case study in how to legally kill your husband, has walked free from court again, this time after defrauding the Australian taxpayers of $78,284.
Falls walked free from Southport (Queensland) Magistrates Court on an intensive supervision order after pleading guilty to ripping off Centrelink over five years when she claimed she was a single mother.
But at the time she was living with her husband Rodney on the Sunshine Coast and the pair owned businesses, built a duplex and took a family holiday to Hawaii.
Falls killed Mr Falls in 2006 when she drugged his dinner and shot him in the head. His body was later dumped in bushland and she reported him missing.
At her trial, she claimed Mr Falls had subjected her to years of brutality and at the time she killed him, he had threatened to kill one of their children because he was angry his in-laws were planning a visit. With her husband deceased Falls was able to make all sorts of accusations against him without challenge.
She was acquitted of the charge and used money earned doing TV and magazine interviews about her ordeal to repay about $78,000 owed to Centrelink.
During the hearing, Falls claimed Mr Falls forced her to falsify documents in order to obtain a single parent payment between 2001 and 2006.
In order to get rent assistance, she also claimed the home she and her husband owned was a rental property.
To keep up the charade, she listed the father of her son born in 2003 as "unknown" when in fact, the boy was fathered by Mr Falls.
Falls was lucky in finding another friendly member of the judiciary, Magistrate Ron Kilner who said he agreed no jail time was warranted, saying Mr Falls had been violent and controlling "in the most extreme way". How was Kilner to know that, he only has Falls word for it?
However he did not accept Mr Falls was the sole reason Falls committed social security fraud.
"Your late husband did not care how he got the money as long as it was there for his needs," he said.
"It was easier for you to get money by filling in forms at Centrelink than to have to work harder."
It is very easy for Falls and Magistrate Kilner to blame the husband for her crimes because he is not around to refute the claims.
Falls lawyer told the court that as Falls can't get a job, she and her new partner are now living on Centrelink benefits.