Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 14°C

min temp: 11°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Ipswich: Treasurer defrauded boxing association

10:15 22 January 2013

South East Suffolk  Magistrates

South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court

Archant

THE former treasurer of Suffolk Amateur Boxing Association is awaiting his fate today after stealing £2,500 from its schools’ account.

shares

Keith Cocker, of Croft Street, Ipswich, admitted 11 charges of fraud, and two of forging his chairman’s signature on cheques, when he appeared before the town’s magistrates.

The 65-year-old claimed he felt compelled to commit the offences after being harassed into doing so by a former lodger, who had assaulted and stolen from him.

The frauds, which totalled £2,530, took place over an eight-month period between June 2011 and February 2012.

Prosecutor Lesla Small said Cocker had been the treasurer of the voluntary association for 20 years.

The offences were reported to police by the organisation’s chairman in July last year.

He told officers £7,000 was missing from the accounts.

Cocker was the sole signatory on cheques until late 2009, when the system was changed to require the dual signatures of the association’s treasurer and chairman.

After the missing money was reported, Cocker was charged with drawing 11 fraudulent cheques worth £2,530.

Seven were made out to a man named Bradley Thorpe, three to Cocker himself, and one to STB Ltd.

Magistrates heard that during a police interview Cocker said Mr Thorpe had been living with him on and off.

Cocker said Mr Thorpe had harassed him and would just turn up, hand the association’s cheque book to him, and make him write the cheques.

The three Cocker wrote for himself went into his Santander account to pay for rent.

Suffolk ABA has now been reimbursed with the £2,530 by Lloyds TSB, which is bearing the loss.

Michael Stephenson, representing Cocker, said: “Mr Cocker seems to have got himself into a position where he was frightened of, and in fact under the power of, a young man who was his lodger.

“The man concerned committed offences of assault against him.

“On January 17, 2012, Mr Thorpe pleaded guilty to two offences of assault, and offences of burglary and theft.

“These were offences of which Mr Cocker was the victim.”

The court was told Thorpe had received a suspended sentence.

However, Mr Stephenson added: “Subsequently that suspended sentenced has been activated.

“This is not quite a case of duress. It doesn’t quite come into that category, but I do think it was something that will be very significant mitigation when the court is actually sentencing.

“There is no doubt that for a substantial period of time Mr Cocker was under the power of this man.”

The magistrates adjourned the case until January 28 for a pre-sentence report.

Cocker was released on unconditional bail.

shares

0 comments

The scene of a fire at Exning Primary School. Headteacher, James Clark.

A primary school has been forced not to open today for the first day of term after a blaze broke out in the early hours of this morning.

Man holds onto a fence outside of a train that was stopped in Bicske, Hungary, Friday, Sept. 4, 2015. Over 150,000 migrants have reached Hungary this year, most coming through the southern border with Serbia. Many apply for asylum but quickly try to leave for richer EU countries. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek)

Three Suffolk MPs have added their calls for Britain to join other European countries in offering more Syrian refugees a safe haven.

The Woodbridge Heritage Group are campaigning against the proposed relocation of

Campaigners fighting for a statue to remain in the town where it has stood for 35 years have received backing from a relative of its original benefactor.

Dr Fayez Ayache is heartbroken by the escalating problems in his homeland

“Syria should be the most secure place in the middle east, but it’s the most destructive place on earth.”

Aiden Bloss at home in Stradbroke with mum Emma and sister Libby.

Starting high school may be seen as a routine event, but for one Suffolk boy it is an impressive milestone in a life that could have been very different.

More than 5,000 smokers in Essex have quit in the last year

The number of people to quit smoking in Essex in the last year is the second highest in the country, new government data has revealed.

Police looking to horse riders to be eyes and ears in rural community.

Horse riders in Essex are invited to the launch of a new police scheme.

The area of memory trees in Rushmere St Andrew which could be set for development. Bruce Goudy (member of Sorry) is pictured.

The family of an Ipswich soldier killed in Afghanistan in 2007 are joining a growing campaign against a development which could see a tree planted in his memory lost.

Olly Rofix, who is taking on an epic tractor journey the length of Britain in his tractor

A cancer survivor, whose charity challenges have included circumnavigating the UK in an 18ft sailing boat, is today setting off on his latest fundraising escapade.

Police burglary investigation - stock photo

A burglar who targeted elderly people living in sheltered housing accomodation in Suffolk and Essex has been jailed for seven years.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages