Coast financial advisor who fleeced couple of $2.4m jailed
A FORMER Maleny financial advisor has been found guilty of fleecing more than $2.4 million from a Perth couple who trusted him to build up their nest egg ahead of retirement.
Peter Hugh Mettam, 70, pleaded not guilty this week in the Brisbane District Court to seven dishonesty and fraud-related offences stemming from his interactions with the couple in 2002.
The jury took less than six hours to find Mettam guilty of all offences and delivered its verdict late on Friday afternoon.
The court heard Lorna and Trevor Kyle entrusted Mettam with $2,402,116, which was to be used for various investment options they had previously discussed.
But Mettam still proclaimed his innocence after the jury delivered its verdict.
"I find it very difficult to believe that when I was asked to make an investment on behalf of the Kyles, as they asked, that I find myself found guilty of fraud," he said from the dock.
Crown prosecutor Lincoln Crowley said Mettam had shown absolutely no remorse for his crimes.
He said the Kyles' money had never been recovered.
"Mettam was responsible for conduct that was dishonest, deceptive and malicious and that was committed over a long period of time," he said.
"He has shown absolutely no remorse for his actions.
"There has been a significant breach of trust involved in this case and a message of deterrence must be sent to the community."
Defence barrister David Shepherd said Mettam was no longer a young man and suffered from some minor health issues.
He tendered three references from family and friends to the court - including one from Patricia Mettam, his wife of 46 years.
Judge Nicholas Samios sentenced Mettam to two years behind bars.
He ordered Mettam be released from prison after serving six months of the sentence.
"You saw the Kyles as being putty in you hands," he said.
"There is no excuse for what you did with their money."