An Australian barrister stole 79 cents from a wishing fountain on the Gold Coast 20 years ago.

He has now turned himself in 20 years after being caught for the offence.

Simon Matters, now a barrister in Melbourne, was reportedly “highly embarrassed” about taking the coins as a 19-year-old in 1992.

He apparently grabbed the loose change, including some now defunct 2-cent coins, during a holiday at Surfers Paradise.

Mr Matters subsequently returned home to Melbourne and entered a career in the law.

Almost two decades later, he turned himself in to Queensland police and appeared before the Southport Magistrates’ Court on charges of stealing and failing to appear in court.

Chief Magistrate, Ron Kilner, accepted Mr Matters’ plea of guilty.

The court ordered that Mr Matters not be punished and no conviction be recorded on his criminal record.

Mr Matters, 38, became a lawyer in 2002 and appears regularly in a range of Victorian courts, mainly in commercial and property cases.

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