Loan destroys friendship as woman sues for $668,000
AN UNREPAID loan between two Noosa women has left both of them distressed and caused the end of their 30-year friendship.
Real estate agent Petrea Lee Pradella loaned her former friend Ann Vivien Oakley a total of $580,000 between February 2010 and June 2011 after Ms Oakley's daughter Tania Michele Oakley fell foul of the law.
Tania, who was a former director of finance companies Tanoak and Fintel Financial Intelligence, was jailed in 2012 for her misuse of customers' money in 2007 and false advice in 2009 and 2010.
Maroochydore District Court heard Ms Pradella initially loaned Ms Oakley $300,000 in February 2010 to financially assist Tania.
Interest was to be paid at 4% a month.
A month later, Ms Pradella loaned a further $230,000 to Ms Oakley on the same basis, with interest payable on the 10th day of every month.
Changes were made to the interest arrangement in June 2011 to bring it to a fixed $4200 monthly payment.
Ms Oakley requested a further $50,000 advance in June 2013 and the fixed monthly interest repayment was increased to $4900.
An agreement was reached in 2014 to reduce the interest payment to $3900 a month.
The court heard the last payment was made on November 10, 2014.
By that time, Ms Oakley had paid $331,851 in interest.
An agreement was reached last year to increase the monthly payment to $4000 but none of the payments were made between December 2014 and September this year.
Ms Oakley told the court on September 23 she intended to use money gained from the sale of her husband Leigh's interests in aquaculture technology.
That was expected to settle before the end of the year.
Ms Oakley was directed to file material to support her response to the lawsuit and although an affidavit was filed, Judge Gary Long said it was not served and, more critically, Ms Oakley did not appear at a hearing on September 30.
Accordingly, the affidavit was not considered in Judge Long's determinations.
He allowed Ms Pradella's claim, which consisted of the $580,000 in capital loaned as well as $88,000 in unpaid interest.
Ms Pradella said after the decision was handed down that she had learnt some lessons from the experience.
"Never lend money to people," Ms Pradella said.
"This person was in dire straits and was in need of help."
She said she had gone into debt herself to help her former friend and felt she was being strung along in regards to being paid back.
She was disappointed the loan came to legal action.
"I just wanted justice and I want to move on."
Meanwhile, Ms Oakley broke down in tears when contacted by the Daily for comment on the outcome.
She said she had declared herself bankrupt.
"My intentions are and always have been to pay her back," Ms Oakley said.
Her daughter Tania said her mother's need for the loan was caused by her legal issues but the money was not used in paying her legal bills.