The former head of a charity has been jailed for five years after he admitted defrauding a pension scheme for workers with disabilities and using the money to buy houses in England and France, The Guardian writes.
Patrick McLarry took more than £250,000 from the pension scheme of Yateley Industries for the Disabled and used it to buy homes for himself and his wife and pay off a debt for a pub lease.
The charity was so badly affected by the sophisticated fraud that it came within days of closing and service users and staff have been left traumatised.
Sentencing him at Winchester crown court, the judge, Andrew Barnett, described the fraud as “an appalling dishonesty and breach of trust”. Alex Stein, prosecuting, said McLarry carried out the fraud by setting up a new company to manage the pension fund, of which he was one of only two directors and in the habit of authorising decisions.
Stein said outside court: “This was a complex, sophisticated fraud undertaken over a number of years against vulnerable victims. Mr McLarry held himself out as a pillar of the community, a legitimate businessman and a man with an MBE.
McLarry, from Bere Alston village near Plymouth in Devon, was also previously convicted of failing to disclose his bank statements to the regulator’s investigators.