Disabled woman was defrauded by Swaffham carer, court told

The crest above the entrance to King's Lynn Court in College Lane. ENGANL00120120910143711
The crest above the entrance to King's Lynn Court in College Lane. ENGANL00120120910143711

A disabled woman has told a court she no longer feels able to trust her carers after one claimed hundreds of pounds from her for work he did not do.

Nathan Reynolds, 25, of Kendle Road, Swaffham, was given a 12 month community order by magistrates in Lynn yesterday, having previously pleaded guilty to a single charge of fraud.

The court heard Reynolds was one of three workers employed by Moira Harris, who has severe arthritis, to provide care for her.

But, over a period of six months, between March and September last year, he submitted time sheets for 40 hours he had not worked, totalling £880.

The bench was told that Mrs Harris herself had discovered the false claims.

When interviewed by police in October 2015, he initially denied the allegation and instead accused Mrs Harris of making a malicious complaint against him.

However, he did admit being responsible for submitting the time sheets, which the court was told it was believed he had altered before submitting them.

In a victim impact statement, which was read to the court, Mrs Harris said the incident had left a “big hole” in her life, as she no longer had contact with Reynolds’ partner or children.

She said she had loved the children “as if they were my own grand-children.”

She added: “I now carry out CRB checks on the people I employ.

“I feel sad because these people are good friends of mine who I simply want to trust.

“But Nathan’s actions mean I now have to check everything. To steal from me is wrong and he had no right to do it.”

Ruth Johnson, mitigating, said her client had been “in a bad place” at the time of his police interview and now recognised the harm he had done to Mrs Harris.

She said: “He is an extremely pleasant and likeable young man. It is strange to put him against this offence.”

As part of his community order, Reynolds was ordered to carry out 47 days of rehabilitation activity.

He was also told to pay £880 in compensation to Mrs Harris, plus a £50 fine. There was no order for costs or a victim surcharge.