Veteran sent to Greece for rehab
A DRUG-addicted veteran who was suffering from PTSD spiralled into petty crime, prompting his religious family to send him to Greece to get clean, a court was told.
Adam George Vairaktaris pleaded guilty in Southport Magistrates Court yesterday to 11 dishonesty and fail to appear charges.
The court was told Vairaktaris stole machine credits at The Star casino on two occasions, and also used a stolen credit card - given to him by an associate - to buy items.
Defence solicitor Linda Cho said Vairaktaris, who is a hairdresser, was in the navy in 2012 and went to the Middle East.
Ms Cho said he returned to Australia in late 2016 and began suffering from "significant" post-traumatic stress disorder.
"Instead of engaging in professional services he engaged with illicit substances, which is unfortunate. He instructs that had led him down a spiral," she said.
Ms Cho said it came to the point where his family, who are devout Greek Orthodox Christians, intervened.
He was sent to Greece to get clean and spent 11 months working and staying off drugs.
Ms Cho said he returned to Australia six weeks ago and handed himself in, as he was wanted by police.
She said he was now back working as a hairdresser and understood how foolish his behaviour was when he was addicted.
Magistrate Ron Kilner said he took into account military service, which would have "certainly" had an impact.
"I think some allowance should be given for people who go through what you have gone through," he said.
Vairaktaris was placed on 12 months probation and ordered to pay $349.63 restitution.
No conviction was recorded.