'Heartless' ex-paramedics posing as nurses demanded wife's painkillers just hours after she died

  • Colin Singleton tells ITV News Meridian's Charlotte Wilkins of his horror at the pair's crimes .


Two former Kent paramedics who fed their drug addictions by stealing morphine from terminally ill patients have been labelled "heartless" by a victim.

The former South East Coast Ambulance Service (SECAMB) paramedics were jailed for five years this week after posing as nurses to steal painkillers from dying patients.

The medication stolen by Jessica Silvester and Ruth Lambert had been prescribed to some of the patients to make their final days as comfortable as possible.

The pair, who are are engaged, preyed on patients receiving end-of-life care across Kent.

Just hours after his wife had passed away from cancer, grieving Mr Singleton received a phone call out of the blue, he told ITV News Meridian.


  • Colin Singleton's wife's medication was taken by the pair just hours after she died


Colin said: "It was the district nurses, they had to come and collect the drugs. I couldn't believe what they were saying."

"How heartless can you be? Why can't this wait? My wife's just died."

"(They said) We've got to do it - there will be someone there within 15 minutes."

But Colin was being deceived.

Ruth Lambert and Jessica Silvester, two paramedics posing as nurses, had made the call.

Former paramedics jailed for theft (from left) Jessica Silvester and Ruth Lambert. Credit: Kent Police

Colin said: "I gave them whatever I had and she said 'where's the rest?'. The following day I phoned the district nurses who did a quick investigation."

The pair had access to patient records through their work as paramedics with SECAMB.

They would then visit the addresses where they would steal the medication.

A jar of used morphine ampules, found at Lambert and Silvester’s home. Credit: Kent Police

A SECAMB spokesperson said the ambulance service "shocked and saddened" at the lengths the two former members of staff went to to commit their crimes.

Colin and Linda were not their only victims.

DCI Matthew Talboys from Kent Police said: "It's quite unique and quite different to what we usually deal with. We started to look at where the crimes had been committed and where they'd been committed and we started to see some similarities."


  • DCI Matthew Talboys of Kent Police on how the investigation unfolded


He added: "This then led us onto quite a complex investigation where we identified the these two individuals who committed at least twenty nine of these offences."

When Colin was asked to describe his feelings towards the two women, he said: "Hatred. Hatred".

"Because how can you do that to people?"