He spent £220k of be­sot­ted woman’s sav­ings

West Lothian Courier - - Front Page - Deb­bie Hall

A skilled conman who swin­dled a woman out of £220,000 has fi­nally been jailed.

His vic­tim thought she had met “the love of her dreams” when she was swept off her feet by Craig Brown, who claimed to be an ex-sol­dier work­ing for the Se­cret Ser­vice.

But within a year of meet­ing, he had de­frauded the woman of £220,000 and spent the money on gam­bling at Bet­Fred and “liv­ing the high life”, a court in Eng­land was told.

When the woman re­alised how cru­elly Brown (41), from Uphall, had cheated her, she called the po­lice.

But he pre­tended to take an over­dose in a fake sui­cide bid then fled to Spain and spent over four years evad­ing jus­tice.

It was only when he re­turned to the UK with a new Span­ish girl­friend that he was ar­rested. The fraud took place while Brown was liv­ing in Eng­land and last Fri­day at Glouces­ter Crown Court he pled guilty via video link from prison to eight of­fences of fraud and one of theft.

The of­fences took place be­tween April and Novem­ber 2012.

Jail­ing Brown for four-and-a-half years, the judge, Recorder Paul Grum­bar, told him: “She has de­scribed how she fell un­der your spell and how you charmed her in al­most every re­spect.

“She clearly fell in love with you and you abused that po­si­tion al­most from the word go.

“Her self-es­teem de­stroyed, she has been hu­mil­i­ated. The huge sum of money which was the ac­cu­mu­lated ef­forts of her

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