Two Adelaide university students who bribed a licence examiner because one was too anxious to sit a driving test have received suspended jail sentences, with a judge describing their corruption as a “cancer” in society.
- Abdul Kajani and Ethan Quadros pleaded guilty to bribery and dishonesty offences
- The pair bribed examiner Jawad Joe Dimachki because Kajani did not want to sit his test
- A judge has now sentenced the pair, saying they needed to be “dealt with sternly”
Abdul Kajani, 23, and his friend Ethan Quadros, 24, pleaded guilty to one count each of bribing a public officer and dishonestly dealing with documents.
The license examiner who accepted the bribe, 38-year-old Jawad Joe Dimachki, was arrested on more than 100 charges in relation to abusing his position as a public officer to secure benefits.
Dimachki has since pleaded guilty to multiple corruption offences and is awaiting sentencing.
During a pre-sentencing hearing for Kajani and Quadros, the court heard the pair bribed Dimachki to authorise that Kajani had passed his driving exam when he had never taken the test.
Court documents revealed Dimachki charged the pair $450.
In sentencing today, Judge Michael Boylan said “such corruption can become a cancer in our system of government”.
“Leaving aside any question about the safety of our community for a moment, our society simply will not tolerate corruption in public office,” he said.
“Further, those who… obtain a license [improperly] could be incompetent drivers, who could pose a threat to the safety of our community.”
The court has previously heard Kajani took the “easy option” of organising the bribe, because he had been “too anxious” to sit the test.
It heard the pair’s original plan was for Kajani to sit the test, but even with an arrangement in place for him to pass, he was too nervous to attend.
Quadros went in his place and gave the certification to Kajani, who took it to Service SA and collected his licence.
Judge Boylan accepted the offending was “out of character” for the university students, and said both were otherwise “hard-working”, “moral”, “selfless” and “decent” people.
“The offending of both of you is at the lower end of the scale for the seriousness for this kind of offending… [but] in cases such as this, general deterrence is especially important,” he said.
“I do not doubt that the fact that each of you has a conviction could have serious employment consequences in the future.
“But in my view your offending is too serious to proceed by way of not recording convictions [and] short terms of imprisonment are appropriate.
“Offending such as yours will not be tolerated and will be dealt with sternly.”
Both men were sentenced to a suspended prison sentence of four months and six days.
The court will hear submissions on Dimachki’s penalty later this month.