Oxford

Foster parent took payments while not caring for children

Oxfordshire County Council Image copyright Robin Sones
Image caption James Davies received the money from Oxfordshire County Council for more than five years

A foster carer has been jailed after he allowed more than £117,000 to be paid to him when he was not caring for children.

James Davies, 54, received the money from Oxfordshire County Council for more than five years.

Oxford Crown Court heard Davies, of Fulwell Close, Banbury, had been posted more than 600 remittance notes.

He pleaded guilty to fraud and using criminal property, and was sentenced to two years and one month in prison.

'Stream of money'

Prosecutor Sarah Gaunt said Davies and his now estranged wife Jill had fostered two children at different times.

She said a "steady stream" of money was "routinely paid" from November 2012 to early 2018.

Jane Brady, defending, told the court she and the defendant were "very surprised if not shocked" when Mr Davies was listed to be "sentenced on his own".

She said Mr Davies and his ex-wife Jill "both had access" to the joint account.

She added: "They both knew the money was going in.

Joint account

"I'm not told any good reason why it is that Mr Davies stands in the dock today."

Ms Brady said the joint account had been in Mrs Davies' name until 2014 before it became a joint account.

She said the defendant had shown "complete and genuine remorse" over the offences and had "shouldered the responsibility".

Sentencing Davies, Judge Tom Rochford said taking money from a public body and from "young children and vulnerable children" was an "offence that society... really regards as a serious matter".

"You should have appreciated and understood that," he added.

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