Home | News | Alleged fake nurse extradited to Qld from NT outback

Alleged fake nurse extradited to Qld from NT outback

A man accused of pretending to be a nurse in two states will be flown to Queensland after he was found wandering in the Northern Territory outback.

Nicholas William Crawford faces more than 110 charges in Queensland after he allegedly used fake documents to get a $100,000-a-year job at a clinic in Aurukun, in Cape York, earlier this year.

The 30-year-old had been given bail and ordered to stay at his mother's home in Victoria but was last week ordered back into custody after being found on a remote stretch of highway between Alice Springs and Katherine. He was remanded into the custody of Queensland police at the Alice Springs Magistrates Court on Monday.

In their application to revoke bail, police say Crawford, who was flown to hospital suffering effects from exposure in the outback, had a mental illness for which he had not been receiving proper treatment.

He had no formal degree but "stated he had limited nursing knowledge due to both his parents being nurses and his partner being a student paramedic", police allege.
He had also "done a lot of reading on the subject", Crawford told police.

It's thought Crawford treated more than 160 people at the clinic, where he allegedly got the job by using fake documents.

Though he never performed intimate examinations, Crawford said he administered drugs, cleaned wounds and treated flu with Panadol during the six weeks at Aurukun.

Crawford told police he had not expected to get the job and was more interested in moving to a remote community than becoming a nurse.

"The defendant stated that if he had not been discovered he would have left due to stress because he did not know what he was doing," police said in their court application to revoke bail.

The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency has brought three charges against Crawford in Queensland and 15 in Western Australia, where he worked in a remote hospital for more than two weeks last year.

Northern Territory police have also launched an investigation into claims he worked five shifts as an agency nurse in June 2014.

Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Kids Helpline 1800 55 1800.

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