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Court Rules on Charity Deception

The Federal Court has found self-proclaimed fundraiser and fake cancer survivor Belle Gibson guilty of misleading and deceptive conduct in relation to claims about her charitable donations made through the sale of a promotional book and an online application.

In the court proceedings initiated by Consumer Affairs Victoria, it was alleged that Gibson claimed to have been diagnosed with brain cancer and rejected conventional cancer treatments in favour of embarking on a quest to heal herself naturally and had developed and promoted a smartphone application and a book.

The court heard that Gibson promoted herself both under her own name and under a business name, The Whole Pantry. It heard that while she claimed part of the proceeds from sales of the application and the book would be donated to charities, many or most of these donations were not made. The charities involved were One Girl, the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre, the Birthing Kit Foundation and the Schwarz family, which was raising funds for treatment for their son.

To read the full Pro Bono article, click here.

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