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Two from Yorkshire among eight charity fraud arrests

Two men from West Yorkshire are among eight people who have been arrested as part of an investigation into charity fraud involving thousands of pounds intended to help people in Syria.

Kent Police arrested the men at addresses across the UK during an early morning operation after £31,816, €8,310 (£6,857) and US$10,700 (£6,413) were seized at the Port of Dover on December 23 2012.

The money, which had come from four UK-based charities, was taken by police who believed it could be used for criminal or terrorist activities.

A 35-year-old man from Dewsbury, and a 43-year-old from Huddersfield are among eight who are being questioned at police stations around the country.

Sentencing in York DEFRA fraud case

The final two defendants involved in a £1.28m fraud against the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) in York have been jailed.

Michael William Bostock, 39, of Stafford was jailed for three years and six months after previously pleading guilty to money laundering the proceeds of the £1.28m theft from DEFRA. He was also disqualified from being a company director for five years.

Michael Ian Davies, 48, of Staffordshire, was sentenced to 15 months in jail.

The pair were part of an organised crime gang who used the proceeds to buy luxury cars and £830,000 worth of gold.

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Former retail giant in court

Sir David Jones (left) has plead not guilty to three charges of fraud
Sir David Jones (left) has plead not guilty to three charges of fraud Credit: Press Association

Ilkley retail grandee Sir David Jones has appeared before Leeds Crown Court judge to deny three counts of fraud.

The 70-year-old former boss of JJB Sports faced two counts of making a misleading statement, contrary to the Financial Services and Markets Act, and one count of using a false instrument, contrary to the Forgery and Counterfeiting Act.

The charges refer to the period between July and October 2009 when he was executive chairman of JJB Sports.

He said not guilty to each of the three charges when they were read out by the clerk.

He will stand trial next year, with it expected to run for five weeks, with extra time allowed as the former retail expert has Parkinson's disease.

Sir David came into court carrying two copies of his autobiography Next To Me.

The charges of making a misleading statement referred to £1.5 million loans received from fellow sportswear giants Dave Whelan and Mike Ashley. The charges relate to stock market announcements.

The false instrument charge related to an allegedly false bank statement.

Sheffield woman jailed for stealing from relative

A 43-year-old woman has been sentenced to two years in prison after pleading guilty to fraud by abuse of position.

Julia Patterson from Ranmoor, Sheffield took money from an 88-year-old relative over a number of years after she gained power of attorney.

The relative lived in a care home in Sheffield and had been given a small living allowance by Patterson. It later emerged that Patterson was in arrears with providing the finance for her relative's care.

South Yorkshire Police discovered that £251,331 had been paid in to accounts and credit cards of Julia Patterson. The amount taken from the relative’s accounts totalled £471,552.

The relative died in January.

11 guilty in crash-for-cash scam

A gang of fraudsters have been found guilty of a series of "crash for cash" scams worth more than half a million pounds.

A major police investigation began after they staged a bus crash in the Burngreave area of Sheffield two years ago. Detectives eventually linked them to 10 more incidents in Sheffield, Rotherham and Halifax.

Pensioner victim of fraud in Chesterfield

CCTV image of people police would like to speak to
CCTV image of people police would like to speak to

Police have released CCTV images of two women they would like to speak to in connection with a series of fraud offences in which more than £9,000 was taken from a pensioner.

Between February 25 and April 10, was withdrawn from the 87-year-old victim’s bank account and her bank card was used to buy various items including laptops, clothes and expensive jewellery.

Officers would like to speak to the women to help them with their inquiries. Both women have dark hair and one is wearing a distinctive diamond patterned jumper in some of the images.

Anyone with information should contact DC Dean Tidd on 101 or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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Lincolnshire fraudster used "Big Fat Gypsy Weddings" as excuse

The leader of a gang of rogue traders from North Lincolnshire which made more than £1.3m by conning elderly people tried to get out of repaying the cash by claiming he had spent some of it on lavish weddings for the community.

David Price led a gang of travellers who ripped off victims by massively overcharging for unnecessary jobs. They must repay £414,000.

He and his family, from Brigg, were jailed at Teesside Crown Court in 2011 for fraud and money laundering. A Proceeds of Crime Act hearing was held this week.

Price, 44, who is currently serving more than seven years, told the hearing he spent thousands on weddings for others, as well as gambling and cigarettes.

He told the court the show Big Fat Gypsy Weddings showed how travellers often clubbed together to pay for lavish ceremonies.

"In Mr Price's evidence there was an attempt to persuade me that it is part of his culture to provide lavish gifts at weddings and a reference to popular television in support.

"If I regarded popular television as a guide to behaviour in the general population I would do a disservice to the general population.

"Mr Price produced no evidence of any such purchase and mentioned not a single person to whom he had made such a gift."

– Judge Howard Crowson, at Teesside Crown Court, said:
Tyne Tees

Full Report: Two sentenced for fraud

Two men have been jailed after swindling two pensioners with advanced dementia out of almost £80,000.

Steven Wood and Ryan Lowe, members of the travelling community, told vulnerable elderly people in North Yorkshire that vital repairs were needed on their homes and gardens.

Trading standards officers found that the work was unnecessary - and that it had not actually been carried out.

Rachel Bullock was at today's sentencing.

Watch her full report below.

Mobility fraudster jailed

A man who conned more than £50,000 from elderly and vulnerable people has been jailed for five years. Darren Sharpe targeted his victims over a 15-month period, selling mobility aids which were often unsuitable and at vastly over-inflated prices.

But when the victims demanded their money back, Sharpe, who's from Mansfield, refused to give them a refund. Today a court was told his victims were targeted across several counties including South Yorkshire and Lincolnshire. Phil Brewster reports.

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