Former JSPCA head pleads guilty to £300,000 of fraud

Jersey Royal Court
Image caption Stephen John Coleman pleaded guilty to 19 crimes committed over a 10-year period

The former chief officer of the JSPCA has pleaded guilty to defrauding the animal welfare charity of £300,000.

Stephen John Coleman, 62, appeared at Jersey's Royal Court charged with 15 counts of fraud, two of forgery and two of uttering forged documents.

Coleman, of St Lawrence, ran the charity for 10 years and was caught after an 18-month investigation by the Joint Financial Crime Unit (JFCU).

Jersey Police said his crimes had a "devastating" impact on the charity.

Det Insp Laurence Courtness, head of the JFCU investigations team, said: "[Coleman] abused a position of significant trust and endangered the vital relationship between the JSPCA and the public."

The new chief executive of the charity, Debra D'Orleans, told the BBC Coleman's actions were a "devastating blow" for the shelter.

"It brought us to our knees", she said.

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