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Lincolnshire woman guilty of Olympic fraud

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A Lincolnshire woman has been charged with fraud after attempting to sell her husband’s Olympic Torch on eBay. Now that’s not in keeping with Olympic values, is it?

David Hereward ran a Judo club in Spilsby and according to is nomination for Torchbearer “built the centre to give youngsters the opportunities that he believes all young people are entitled to no matter their background or geographical location”. However, when he club ran into debt his wife, Caroline Hereward took it upon her self to put the torch on auction website eBay.

Photo by Suzy Aldridge

Photo by Suzy Aldridge

The buyer, Stephen Flashman payed £3,001 plus postage for the item which was one of 8000 carried throughout the 70 days of the relay. When the torch never arrived Flashman messaged Mrs Hereward who replied saying that her husband wouldn’t let go of the torch and that she couldn’t send it. When the money was not returned immediately Mr Flashman threatened to go to the police.

“The police tried to organise another way of dealing with the matter other than via a court appearance such as arranging for the complainant to get his money back,” said Paul Wood, the prosecutor at Skegness Magistrates Court.

“But they felt Mrs Hereward was obstructive. She was asked where the torch was. She said she had given it away but shortly after her arrest, it was found at her home on the kitchen table.”

Caroline Hereward admitted to fraud in court and awaits sentencing on 9th November. According to her defence Mrs Hereward was “embarrassed and ashamed at what’s happened” but her actions still cast a shadow over her husband’s time as a Torchbearer and the charitable work he did for Spilsby judo club.

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