A Bishop Auckland councillor who defrauded the NHS and a trade union out of more than £80,000 has been jailed.
Tanya Tucker, a former County Durham councillor who was elected to Bishop Auckland Town Council last September, was convicted of seven counts of fraud today.
She was handed a 28-month sentence after a recent two-week trial at Durham Crown Court.
The court heard how Tucker, of Walker Drive, Bishop Auckland, defrauded both organisations over a four-year period.
Tucker, as Unison’s Durham branch secretary and treasurer, had claimed identical expenses from both organisations - often forging her colleague's signatures on cheques to make them look plausible.
The 58-year-old went on to spend the money on a car, restaurant bills, hotel stays, beauty treatments and even used it to pay for her honeymoon.
Fraud Investigator, Detective Constable Ali Blackett, of Durham Constabulary’s Economic Crime Unit said: “Fraud is a despicable crime that can have far-reaching consequences for victims especially for vital organisation such as the NHS.
“Tucker not only abused her position of trust in both organisations but went to great lengths to hide her deceit so it is satisfying to see justice served.”