‘Comatose’ conman awaits sentence

Published: Friday 7th November 2014 by The News Editor

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A man who conned his neighbour out of £40,000 before pretending to be a quadriplegic and in a coma for two years to try to evade justice will learn his fate today .

Alan Knight, 47, from Swansea, faked his condition but was later caught by police going on shopping trips and holidays.

He even turned up at court in a wheelchair and neck brace – despite a judge being shown a video of him freely walking around.

Knight admitted 19 counts of forgery, fraud and theft and a detective said: “There’s nothing wrong with him.”

Detective Constable Paul Harry of South Wales Police said: “This is the most calculated, long-term deception of a vulnerable, elderly neighbour I have ever seen.

“He had constantly avoided court for two years, costing police, the NHS and the court system thousands of pounds”.

Knight, of Maes y Gollen, Sketty, who was living on benefits, claimed to be caring for next-door neighbour Ivor Richards, who was suffering from dementia.

But he systematically “drained” Mr Richards’ accounts and spent the cash on a caravan and holidays.

And after the threat of prosecution loomed over him, he then claimed to have suffered a massive neck injury which left him in a comatose state.

Police tried “at least twice” to bring him to court but each time he admitted himself to hospital, claiming his condition had “worsened”.

But doctors at the hospital later spotted him eating, wiping his face and writing.

He finally appeared in court in a wheelchair and wearing a neck brace to admit the charges before being remanded into custody by Judge Paul Thomas – who warned him to expect a jail sentence.

Judge Thomas said: “A strong message needs to be sent out to anyone who seeks to adopt the same tactics in future.”

Published: Friday 7th November 2014 by The News Editor

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