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Sarah Jane Parkinson accused her former fiancé of assault and rape. But it was all a lie.

When Daniel Jones met Sarah Jane Parkinson in 2011, he thought he had met the love of his life.

From the moment they first met at their workplace in Canberra, the couple’s relationship moved fast.

Within just a few short months, Daniel and Sarah were engaged as the pair began building their own home and planning their wedding.

But just days after moving into their new home together, Daniel was served with an apprehended violence order (AVO).

Despite protesting his innocence, police brought a number of charges against Daniel.

“I’d just built a house and she’d moved in with me, everything was going well,” he told 60 Minutes.

“I had everything right… and in that instance, everything just went to sh*t.”

sarah jane parkinson
Daniel Jones and Sarah Jane Parkinson. Image: 60 Minutes.

For months before Daniel was handed an AVO, Sarah, who worked as a clerical assistant at a police station, had been blaming bruises and other injuries on her partner.

From a self-inflicted head injury to a fake knife wound, Sarah notified her police friends of each 'violent incident' and logged the incidents in a diary, which she planned to use as evidence in court.

"When I first got charged, I found out she had been keeping a diary of things that never happened," Daniel told news.com.au.

"She'd written entries going back more than six months with a view to using it as a historical document in court."

A few years after Sarah's lies first began, Daniel was arrested.

Just hours beforehand, Sarah had called police, claiming that she had been raped and physically assaulted by her partner after planting fake evidence.

As Daniel awaited his trial, he was sent to Goulburn's maximum security prison for a crime he did not commit.

According to 60 Minutes, he wrote to his parents: "I'm scared – I shouldn't be, because I've done nothing at all – but there is a small percentage in me that tells me I'm f*cked."

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As a former prison officer, Daniel was housed in the protection wing in the prison alongside paedophiles and informers for almost five months.

During that time, he began to contemplate suicide.

"You get to those dark times where you think maybe it would be better not to be around anymore, not be a burden on mum and dad," he told news.com.au.

When Daniel was released on bail, however, the lies continued.

As Sarah continued to call police with claims he had breached his bail conditions, he was forced to move across the country to Western Australia.

But after a new detective, Leesa Alexander, was assigned to the case, Sarah's lies finally began to unravel.

"The idea of an innocent person being in jail is horrific, not just to a police officer, but everybody," Detective Alexander said.

sarah jane parkinson
Sarah Jane Parkinson was sentenced to three years and one month in prison. Image: 60 Minutes.

In January, 2019, Sarah was sentenced to three years and one month in prison for a false reporting of rape.

It's believed her motive was to gain the house the couple had bought just weeks before the allegations began.

It was also discovered that Sarah had been having an affair with a policeman.

In court, Magistrate Beth Campbell said that Sarah's lies had "exploited" the seriousness of how rape and domestic violence are treated.

But while Daniel finally got justice, the Jones family are still struggling with hundreds of thousands of debt from the lengthy court process.

Now, a GoFundMe campaign has been launched in the hopes of recovering some of the family's lost funds.

60 Minutes airs this Sunday at 8.30pm on Channel Nine.

If you think you may be experiencing depression or another mental health problem, please contact your general practitioner or in Australia, contact Lifeline 13 11 14 for support or beyondblue 1300 22 4636.

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