Fake ac­coun­tant convicted of mul­ti­ple fraud charges

Man cheated his way into job at film and tele­vi­sion school rack­ing up £15k ex­penses

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS - by Tom Her­bert tom.her­bert@trin­i­tymir­ror.com Twit­ter: @TRHer­bert

A FRAUD­STER who claimed to be a qual­i­fied ac­coun­tant to bag him­self a job at the Na­tional Film and Tele­vi­sion School has been found guilty of a raft of fraud and theft charges.

Har­vey Pearce, 49, was convicted at Ayles­bury Crown Court on Tues­day of five counts of fraud by abuse of po­si­tion, two counts of fraud by false rep­re­sen­ta­tion and one count of theft by em­ployee.

In 2010, Pearce, of Wil­low End, Did­cot, Ox­ford­shire, falsely rep­re­sented he was a qual­i­fied ac­coun­tant to get a job as a fi­nance man­ager at the school in Bea­cons­field, but was re­leased from em­ploy­ment in Septem­ber 2013 af­ter con­cerns were raised about his work.

The school then con­ducted an in­ter­nal in­ves­ti­ga­tion which iden­ti­fied a num­ber of fraud­u­lent trans­ac­tions.

Pearce had fraud­u­lently paid him­self ex­penses of al­most £15k, had used his school credit card to pay for per­sonal items and union mem­ber­ship, had bought two iPads on the school ac­count, had over­paid him­self more than £4k and not de­ducted pen­sion con­tri­bu­tions from his salary.

In 2014 he ap­plied for a job as fi­nance man­ager at Di­a­mond Light Source in Did­cot, where he again claimed to be a qual­i­fied ac­coun­tant and worked at the com­pany from June 2014 un­til the time of his ar­rest in Septem­ber 2014.

Pearce pleaded guilty to earn­ing al­most £155k af­ter ob­tain­ing both jobs by false rep­re­sen­ta­tion and to ob­tain­ing more than £24k from the Na­tional Film and Tele­vi­sion School by fraud and theft.

In­ves­ti­gat­ing of­fi­cer, Det Con Katie Tay­lor of the Eco­nomic Crime Unit said: “This in­ves­ti­ga­tion un­cov­ered de­ceit and fraud against two lo­cal em­ploy­ers.

“Har­vey Pearce lied to ob­tain po­si­tions with them. He then be­trayed the trust placed in him and abused his po­si­tion to ben­e­fit him­self.

“This has been a long and com­plex in­ves­ti­ga­tion and I trust that the con­vic­tion not only re­as­sures our com­mu­ni­ties but also sends a mes­sage out that crime will not pay in the Thames Val­ley.”

Pearce is set to be sen­tenced at Ayles­bury Crown Court on June 7.

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