With credit cards that were found in the street, fraudster Matthew James 37 went on a spending spree. The St. Leonard’s man found a lost wallet that belonged to Noel Turner that contained cash and cards along with PIN numbers last December 29. Instead of handing it into police he purchased thousands of pounds of goods after withdrawing money. He finally confessed to his father who turned him into the police.
The defendant withdrew over £300 from a cashpoint and £500 from another one on December 31 said Mark Kateley the prosecutor, at a court hearing on March 28. He also used the cards to buy camera equipment worth more than £2000 and watches that were valued at over £200 as well as t-shirts and other goods from a sporting goods store.
Alcohol and partying were other things he spent the money on according to the prosecutor and on January 8 while visiting his father he was able to pluck up enough courage to confess to his dad about all that he had done. A total of close to £3,500 of Mr. Turner’s money was spent by the defendant and Mr. Turner has been reimbursed said prosecutor Mr. Kateley.
At a February 9 police interview James confessed to finding the wallet full of cards and in using them for his own gain. The defendant, who is deaf, appeared before Hastings magistrates and pleaded guilty to a charge of theft by finding and three counts of fraud by false representation.
This was not calculated over a long period of time says defending Alison Pringle, since it happened only over a two day period. The case was adjourned so pre-sentence reports could be filed.