Man stole brother's $31,000 from estate

A MAN who deprived his brother of thousands of dollars has appeared in Launceston's Supreme Court.

Barry Douglas Hazelwood, 60, of Flowery Gully, pleaded guilty yesterday to stealing $31,000 in 2006.

Crown prosecutor Yolanda Prenc said Hazelwood was the executor of his deceased mother's estate.

The estate was to be distributed evenly among her seven children, she said.

As executor, it was Hazelwood's role to bank a $31,000 cheque on behalf of his brother, whose finances are managed by the Public Trustee.

Instead, he banked the money into his own account, Ms Prenc said.

In 2012 the Public Trustee contacted Tasmania Police, who later charged the accused.

Before the incident, Hazelwood, who ran his own business, was badly injured in a workplace accident, which damaged a work truck, defence counsel Fabiano Cangelosi said.

The fallout had placed him under considerable financial strain at the time, the court heard.

When his brother's cheque arrived, Hazelwood banked the money, using some of it to bolster his ailing business.

Despite the theft, Hazelwood had since patched things up with his brother, Mr Cangelosi said.

About $12,000 had also been repaid.

Justice David Porter ordered he be assessed for community service and adjourned sentencing until Thursday.