Assault in 2002 catches up with woman

A WOMAN who has avoided police since she assaulted and tried to rob a woman more than 10 years ago, has been given a suspended prison sentence.

Tanja Sieglinde Oakes, 32, yesterday pleaded guilty to attempted robbery with actual violence to overcome resistance and assault occasioning bodily harm.

The court heard on December 26, 2002, Oakes was walking along a street in Carina in Brisbane when she saw a woman walking in the opposite direction.

Her defence told the court she mistakenly identified the woman, who has since returned to Korea, as someone who had been making fun of her at a nightclub prior to the event.

The then 21-year old Oakes walked up to the woman and tried to take her handbag.

She repeatedly slapped her in the face causing cuts and bruises, with the court hearing the woman could taste blood in her mouth.

While they were struggling over the bag a passer-by intervened and stopped the fight, causing Oakes to let go and walk away.

She was arrested by police the next day and spent 29 days in pre-sentence custody. But she then failed to appear at her court appearances and avoided authorities for the next 10 years.

She eventually came to the attention of the police earlier this year when they went to her Redbank Plains home on unrelated matters.

The court heard her only offending since the incident had been failing to appear in court.

Judge Greg Koppenol said her actions were deplorable and showed Australia in a bad light to foreign nationals.

"It does not reflect well on our society," he said.

"This is another example of an unprovoked attempt to steal property with violence."

Judge Koppenol said her youth at the time and the fact she pleaded guilty saved her from going to jail. She was sentenced to 18 months prison, suspended for two years.

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