A jury at Canterbury Crown Court found her guilty of six offences of theft and one of misconduct in a public office last Wednesday.
She was found not guilty of one count of theft, where she was accused of stealing £1,500, at the end of a three-week trial.
Scott, of High Grove in Plumstead, south London, fleeced at least six unsuspecting people out of a combined £13,500 in the space of a month last year.
The 39-year-old used her knowledge of the airport to approach passengers at CCTV blind spots as they were about to go through the final gate on to their flight and ask how much cash they were carrying.
In some cases she said anything above £1,000 would have to be confiscated and the passenger could claim it back when they returned.
Those who questioned what was happening or asked for a receipt so they could collect the money on their return were given the option of completing paperwork and potentially missing their flight.
Scott placed the stolen money in her police hat before heading back to the police station to remove it.
Among her victims was a woman, who she stole £3,000 from, travelling to Turkey intending to spend part of the money on a wedding.
Her crimes quickly came to light as passengers returning from Turkey, Albania and Vietnam began asking staff at the airport for their money back.
Judge James O'Mahony told Scott she can expect a lengthy prison sentence, even though she gave birth to a baby daughter seven weeks ago.
He said she had targeted vulnerable people such as a passenger who had saved money for an operation and another who had worked hard to provide money for his parents in Vietnam
PCSO Daniel Cowley's life saved after BOTH parents donated kidneys
Daniel Cowley is taking part in a charity run to say thanks to the charity Kidney Research UK
By Emma Grimshaw 18 September, 2014
DANIEL Cowley could barely walk before his kidney transplant but now is set to take part in 5k charity run. The transformation in the 35-year-old's health is thanks to both his parents, who each donated him a kidney.
Daniel, from Stoke Gifford, said he felt lucky enough when his dad Roger was identified as a match. But weeks after the surgery, Daniel was told the devastating news that the kidney had failed. This meant his health could drastically plummet unless another donor was found quickly.
Tests then proved his mother Debbie was also suitable to donate her kidney, offering him a much-needed lifeline.
Daniel's left kidney failed before he was born, but was not discovered until he was six weeks old when he was rushed to hospital after developing meningitis. His left kidney was removed and Daniel was given intensive therapy.
As a child, he endured multiple operations to try to limit the damage to his remaining kidney. But unfortunately it failed when he was 29.
Daniel, a police community support officer, said: "It was a harrowing experience when my first transplant failed – not just for me, but my family too. When the opportunity for my second transplant came up, I had to think hard about it. I didn't know if I would cope if the second transplant failed as well."
Daniel then underwent dialysis around four times a week a Southmead Hospital while he waited for the necessary tests to be completed before his second transplant.
Throughout this period he was only allowed to drink a litre and half of liquid a day. He said: "It was very restricting, I was incredibly thirsty. You could be in there all day for the dialysis. in a room, strapped to a machine staring at four walls.
"The staff were amazing throughout, they become like your extended family, you get to know them so well. They see you through it, without them I wouldn't have been able to finish or continue."
Everything was successful with his second transplant and Daniel has now been living a healthy life for around four years.
At the end of the month he will take on the Chepstow Stampede to help raise vital funds for research into kidney disease.
Daniel said: "The Chepstow Stampede is my personal challenge to give back and say thank you for all the amazing support I had – from work, from my family and my doctors. There's no way anyone can ever be repaid from a financial perceptive, what has been given to me can never be repaid.
MP wades into PCSO car bill row
A ROW over who pays the £1,500-a-year bill for a community police car has been taken to the top by Mannintree’s MP.
By Harwich and Manningtree Standard 17 September, 2014
Manningtree, Mistley and Lawford councils had been asked to stump up the cash for a car used by their two police community support officers.
Now Harwich and North Essex MP Bernard Jenkin has waded into the argument and contacted Essex Police and Crime Commissioner Nick Alston in a bid to hammer out a solution.
Mr Jenkin said the row was causing a “great deal of frustration”.
Nick Alston, Police and Crime Commissioner for Essex, said: “However, as the EVOLVE programme and the new local policing plans are implemented, changes have been made across the county around matters such as the funding of PCSOs and the resources available to support them.
"I am reassured by Essex Police that there are other vehicles available and that the force is discussing future funding options with local stakeholders for this particular vehicle.”
A PCSO has suffered a fractured skull after being assaulted by a car passenger who later fled on foot. |
By PiersMeyler | Posted: August 25, 2014
The 28-year-old was in the middle of detaining a passenger of a Vauxhall Astra when he hit his head on the ground after being pushed by his assailant.
The PCSO has been taken to hospital where a scan has revealed that he has a fractured skull. He is in a stable and non life threatening condition.
Two male police constables and the male PCSO were in an unmarked police vehicle in Brentwood Road, Romford at 8pm on Sunday August 24 when a Vauxhall Astra driving at speed overtook them.
The vehicle then went round the roundabout to head in the other direction.
Officers blocked the road in an attempt to stop the vehicle in order to speak to the driver who then drove into the Havering Oak pub car park in an attempt to evade officers.
Officers followed the vehicle and as the vehicle came to a stop one of the male PCs opened the car door and took the car keys.
The officer asked the driver to exit the vehicle. but after getting out of the car immediately attempted to push the officer to the floor.
The suspect then ran off chased by the two male PCs. He ran along South Street but was detained by a member of the public outside the Brickyard pub.
The 28-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of assault on police and drink drive. He is currently in custody.
Ian Hilton was giving evidence during the second day of the hearing at Chelmsford Coroner’s Court.
The family have fought for an inquest to be heard into the death of Maria.
On Monday, Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York - a friend of Mrs Stubbings’ family - attended the hearing to show her support.
Maria’s former partner Marc Chiver’s admitted murdering her in October 2009 and was jailed for life.
He strangled the 50-year-old to death between December 15 and 18 in 2008. Chivers had already served a life-term in a German prison following the death of another former partner in 1992.
And in July 2008, Chivers, a German dual-national, was jailed for four months for assaulting Mrs Stubbings.
The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) has since published two highly critical reports highlighting Essex Police's failures to protect her.
During the second day of the hearing - which is expected to last between five and six weeks - PCSO Hilton recalled an encounter with Chivers in one of the car parks at Hylands Park, Chelmsford on December 11, 2008.
He came across Chivers and three 15-year-olds, one of which was Benji Stubbings, Maria’s son, in a Saab while on patrol, shortly after midday.
PCSO Hilton said he was drawn to the car as something didn’t look right. It turned out that Chivers was with Benji without Maria’s permission soon after she had reported Chivers to the police for theft of some of her medication.
PCSO Hilton carried out checks on Chivers through the Police National Computer and called for back up. After a search of his car by police officers, Chivers was allowed to go free.
But PCSO Hilton said: “Chivers made me feel uneasy. He was a strange looking character. He had a large scar down the side of his left cheek and he was very on edge.”
The community support officer told the inquest that during that encounter, Chivers had told him that “three months of his life being messed up by being in prison” and that he felt Maria’s complaint of sexual assualt on him was unfair. PCSO Hilton, who now works as a customer contact adviser at Colchester Police Station said officers warned Chivers that if he was caught with Benji again without Maria’s permission, he would face arrest for kidnap. Mr Hilton added: “[After the incident at the park had been dealt with] Chivers told me he was going to home and sort it out.
PCSO avoids jail after being paid £150 by The Sun
A former police community support officer (PCSO) has avoided jail after he admitted tipping off The Sun that supermodel Naomi Campbell (pictured, Reuters) was in custody over an allegation of assault.
By PA Mediapoint 18 September, 2014
Paul Randall, 49, found out the model was at a Westminster police station where he worked on 25 October 2006 and rang the tabloid newspaper which dispatched a photographer to the scene.
Although he was one of two sources for the story, his information helped The Sun get the scoop on the South London-born model, resulting in two stories being published, prosecutor Stuart Biggs said.
He was paid £150 for the one-off phone call to the tabloid newspaper, the court heard.
Randall, who had worked as a Westminster-based PCSO for five years, was sacked in 2007 after being convicted of an unrelated public order offence of "road rage", Biggs said.
In mitigation, his lawyer Stephen McCaffrey told the court that the married father-of-two had suffered from ill health but had accepted his guilt.
He said: "He is a man who is bitterly sorry, not because he got caught but sorry for what he has done."
He understood that the offence was "not a question of Naomi Campbell or anyone else" but about a public official failing in his work, the lawyer said.
Randall, of south-west London, was sentenced to five months' imprisonment suspended for two years plus 100 hours of unpaid work in the community after pleading guilty to one count of misconduct in a public office.
Sentencing him, Judge Richard Marks said: "In 2006, a well known model attended the police station at which you were based in respect of an allegation of assault.
"That is a matter that came to your attention by reason of your presence at the police station and you took the opportunity to telephone the Sun newspaper in order to tip them off about the incident.
"The fact you had the phone number of The Sun on your phone is not without insignificance because that is not normally the sort of information an ordinary PCSO would expect to have entered in their phone.
"Not surprisingly, The Sun newspaper were extremely interested in the story. They published two articles and published photographs and as far as they were concerned it was something of a scoop.
"The seriousness of what you did exists in the breach of trust involved because in effect you had two separate paymasters - your employers and the newspaper."
Durham Police warn bootleg booze could kill
PCSO Michelle Williamson and Sergeant Tim Robson, of Durham Constabulary’s alcohol harm reduction unit seize illegal vodka
By Gavin Havery 10 September, 2014
A WARNING has been issued after potentially lethal vodka made with industrial alcohol was found on sale in a North-East town.
Two men have been arrested on suspicion of supplying the counterfeit spirit to an underage teenage girl in Stanley, County Durham.
Officers believe the source of the bootleg booze - on sale through an underground dial-a-drink service - could lead to organised crime gangs.
The racket was uncovered by police who found the alcohol on sale in bottles marked Glen's vodka - a genuine brand - advertised through a Facebook group, which has more than 1,300 members.
Sergeant Tim Robson, of Durham Constabulary’s alcohol harm reduction unit, said: “We have grave concerns. The bottles are marked with Glen’s vodka but we are confident it is illicit and counterfeit.
“It is polluted with industrial alcohol, which has been put into vodka bottles.
“It could cause serious internal damage to your organs.
“You have heard of blind drunk, this stuff could make you blind. It could be fatal if they are selling it to kids.”
An undercover female officer bought a litre of the spirit with a two litre cola mixer for £20 on August 21 and ten days later a 16-year-old working with police made the same purchase at Woodside Grove in Tantobie.
Two men, aged 24 and 32, from the Stanley area, were arrested on suspicion of breaching both trademark and licensing legislation after the second test purchase.
Police then seized a further four bottles of the vodka, up to 20 bottles of wine, 60 cans of lager, 48 bottles of beer and 48 cans of cider from a house in nearby South Moor.
The men, who have been bailed until October, could be facing hefty fines and imprisonment if convicted.
Police have been working on Operation Gravity with officers from Durham County Council’s trading standards department.
Inspector Colin Dobson said the vodka is likely to be manufactured on a large scale.
He said: “This is just the tip of the iceberg. The source of this will lead to links with organised crime, without a doubt, and as a force we are working to dismantle these groups.”
Police believe at least six bottles of illegal Glen’s vodka may still be in circulation in the area.
Parking warden fighting for life after being hit over head with plank of wood
Warden attack: the incident happened in Myddleton Road, Bounds Green (file image)
By Matt Watts John Dunne and Kiran Randhawa on 10 September, 2014
A traffic warden is fighting for his life after being beaten unconscious in a dispute over a parking ticket.
The man was battered across the head with a plank of wood before collapsing in front of horrified shoppers in Bounds Green.
Eye-witnesses today claimed that the warden initially resisted after he was assaulted, then he and his attacker fought a running battle down the busy street yesterday.
But the warden suddenly keeled over and was rushed to hospital in a critical condition. He remained there today and was said to be “serious but stable”.
Andrea Constantinides, 45, ran to help the man and gave him first aid. The lettings consultant, who works on Myddleton Road where the attack took place, said: “There was a running battle all the way along the road. It was really nasty. The warden was standing one minute, then he just collapsed
“I ran over and tried to put him in the best position. He was breathing but not responding.
“There was not much blood but it was obvious that he had been seriously injured. I really thought the worst.”
Onlooker Afroulla Yiannopoulou, 48, called the ambulance. She said: “These guys were both fighting each other and the warden was hitting back.
“They were battling all along the street. I phoned for an ambulance but it took ages. Luckily there was a first aider on the scene and a nurse who was passing helped.”
A building worker, who only gave his name as George, tried to drag the driver off the warden. He said: “I did break them up but the warden continued to fight as well. At one point the warden picked up the man and threw him.
“At another stage the warden was on the ground and the man was repeatedly punching him in the face. It was really sickening. He is lucky to be alive.”
The Haringey council warden had issued a ticket just moments before the attack at about 4.45pm yesterday.
An hour afterwards police arrested a 29-year-old man on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm. He was being questioned by officers at a north London police station today.
Haringey council said: “We are providing support to our officer and his family at this time. Our staff should be safe to do their job without fear of violence.
Crown Office employee Iain Sawers guilty of leaks
Iain Sawers, 25, from Edinburgh, was found guilty at the end of a seven-day trial at Edinburgh Sheriff Court
By BBC NEWS 5 September, 2014
A jury found him guilty on a charge of attempting to pervert the course of justice, the Official Secrets Act and nine under the Data Protection Act.
The sheriff said he was considering imposing a custodial sentence.
Sentence was deferred until 19 September. Sawers was bailed.
Sawers joined the Productions Office of the Procurator Fiscal Service in Chambers Street in the city in 2008.
His induction covered security of information and the warning that any breach could lead to disciplinary proceedings. He was also told, under the Official Secrets Act, the unauthorised disclosure of documents was an offence.
The offences by Sawers came to light when police began an investigation into the case of 27-year old Calum Stewart on charges of breach of bail and attempting to pervert the course of justice by threatening his ex-partner, Kelli Anne Smillie, if she gave evidence in a trial in July, 2013.
Stewart paid for her and her mother to leave the country and go on holiday to Benidorm on the week of the trial.
The police investigations led them to a number of phone calls and text messages between Stewart and Sawers between 24 and 29 January 2014.
These led to Stewart phoning Kelli Anne threatening her and her mother. They were to be witnesses in the outstanding trial which has since been deserted by the Crown.
The police also recovered Sawers' iPhone. Although many messages had been deleted, forensic experts were able to recover them and the telephone numbers of the senders and receiver. They showed that between April 2008 and January 2014, Sawers had passed on information to other people on nine occasions.
A check on the productions office computer showed shortly after receiving a call, Sawers' secret personal user number was used to access the information.
The jury also found Stewart guilty of attempting to pervert the course of justice and breach of bail. Neither men gave evidence during the trial.
In his closing address to the jury, Fiscal Depute, Keith O'Mahony told them: "This trial is about you as members of the public, who at some time in the future may be the victim of a crime.
"If you are, you will go to the police and they will bring the case to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service.
"When you report that case you must have confidence your details - name, address, date of birth and telephone number will be kept safe, secure and confidential and not disclosed to others, particularly to people who may wish to harm you."
Apple’s iOS 8 is so secure, even the police can’t get hold of your personal details
In an open letter to customers, Apple’s chief executive Tim Cook announced the firm has changed the way encryption works in iOS 8.
As a result the company can no longer bypass a user’s passcode, making it impossible for it to hand over data to law enforcement officers and governments
By Victoria Woollaston 18 September, 2014
This is the case, even if a search warrant is served on the firm or customer.
These new rules, however, only apply to data stored on the device, locked by a passcode, and Apple will be able to access data stored on iCloud if presented with a warrant for it.
And because these new features only apply to iOS 8, data can be extracted where necessary on devices running older versions of the software, from iOS 4 to iOS 7, as has always been the case.
The announcement is part of a wider privacy and security push being made by Apple to protect its users.
In the letter, on Apple’s new Privacy page, Mr Cook wrote:
‘At Apple, your trust means everything to us.
'We’re publishing this website to explain how we handle your personal information, what we do and don’t collect, and why.
‘A few years ago, users of internet services began to realise that when an online service is free, you’re not the customer. You’re the product.
‘But at Apple, we believe a great customer experience shouldn’t come at the expense of your privacy.’
According to the new privacy site, on devices running iOS 8, personal data including photos, messages - including attachments - email, contacts, call history, iTunes content, notes, and reminders are placed under the protection of a user’s passcode.
‘Unlike our competitors, Apple cannot bypass your passcode and therefore cannot access this data,’ continued the firm.
‘So it's not technically feasible for us to respond to government warrants for the extraction of this data from devices in their possession running iOS 8.’
And as part of Apple’s updated Legal Process Guidelines, used by the police and governments, the firm said: ‘For all devices running iOS 8.0 and later versions, Apple will no longer be performing iOS data extractions as the data sought will be encrypted and Apple will not possess the encryption key
Police chief urges: Help addicts more and legalise heroin
Heroin should be decriminalised and the vilification of addicts must end as the ‘war on drugs’ has failed, a senior police figure has claimed.
By METRO NEWSPAPER 4 September, 2014
After ‘decades of failure’, the government needs to rethink its policies, stated Durham’s police and crime commissioner, Ron Hogg.
‘We need a new approach; one that treats addicts as patients who need treatment, rather than criminals who need locking up,’ he wrote in The Northern Echo.
‘I call for the government to decriminalise addiction and support recovery. Isolation and persecution of addicts is uncivilised, unsuccessful and too often wholly unaddressed.’
Mr Hogg said decriminalisation would rid Britain’s streets of heroin, prevent fatal overdoses and stop drug dealers from preying on the addicted while lining their own pockets.
He also suggested we follow the lead of Australia, Canada, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain and Switzerland and introduce drug consumption rooms where addicts, could ‘be saved’ by being given controlled doses of diamorphine.
Simon Fraser · Top Commenter · Works at Student
Well done metro. There is a big difference between legalisation and decriminalisation. http://www.economist.com/blogs/economist-explains/2014/06/economist-explains-10 It does not mean that they are legal, rather that you will not be treated like a criminal if you have a small amount in you for personal use.
September 4 at 9:01am
Lee Brandley · Colchester, Essex
Look at the results in Canada; Denmark; Germany; Australia etc.. is it working, have the figures lowered of fatal overdoses; crime waves; drug dealing arrests; etc.. then follow suit. Can't be any more of a failure than the present way of treating the disease of addiction. At last! A copper with a modicum of common sense. :)
September 7 at 12:33am
Wurz Gummeridge · Lincoln, Lincolnshire
Absolutely and totally agree that we should decriminalise heroin and other drug addiction, an instant blow on organised crime. At last, a Police and Crime Commissioner who isn't afraid to stand up and say what so many are thinking.
September 6 at 8:39pm
Tony Paterson · Glasgow, United Kingdom
I kinda agree with this. If supply = demand then there will always be illegal heroin dealers. You can disrupt the flow of cash to criminal organisations that are in control of the supply by offering controlled access to it for recovery purposes.
If I remember correctly heroin is also a lot safer than methadone, which is also addictive and can be deadly without warning, even in controled doses. If I'm still remembering correctly, methadone is also way more expensive than heroin too.
I don't think it is a problem that will be solved over night but I do think that this is a good way of disrupting the status quo as it is now.
September 4 at 10:04am
Lynny Hartley · St georges church of england school
youve got to be kidding me
September 4 at 6:59pm
Mill End woman had to scour caravan site for lost dog after it was given to a stranger by PCSO
The "distraught" owner learned that her 10-year-old dog, Kai, had been found in Rickmansworth High Street, only then to be given to a stranger by a PCSO.
By Kathryn Snowdon, Senior Reporter 21 August, 2014
Despite Kai being microchipped, he was not taken to a vets to have his details scanned.
After hours of searching, Sharon Norris tracked her dog to a Chorleywood farm where a stranger had been keeping Kai in his caravan.
The 57-year-old teacher lost her beloved pet while walking along the Grand Union Canal, near Rickmansworth, on Tuesday afternoon.
Kai, a Jack Russell Terrier cross, went off to explore but did not return.
When Ms Norris spoke with the police, they confirmed that a dog matching Kai’s description had been found and gave her the contact details of the lady who found him.
Ms Norris, of Maxwell Close, said: "When I spoke with the woman who found him she said she had been told by a PCSO to hand the dog over to a random guy who claimed to recognise the dog and know the owner.
"The police allowed my property to be taken by someone who couldn’t prove they owned it.
"I was distraught, gobsmacked and extremely worried. I’m still really angry. There were such little checks carried out by the police. I know they haven’t got a responsibility to look after dogs anymore but that responsibility is now passed to the dog warden.
"They can’t just give dogs over to someone who claims to know the owner. They shouldn’t just give it away. The police actually helped my dog get stolen.
"That is the horrifying thing. You hear all these stories about dogs being taken for dog fighting and this person just went off with my dog. I was in such a state."
Fortunately, the man who took Kai left his first name and the Chorleywood farm he was staying at.
At about 9pm, Ms Norris went to the farm in the hope of finding her beloved pet.
She said: "I was lucky. I found both the guy and Kai in a caravan. I went over to the caravan to knock on the window when I saw my dog. When the guy opened the window the dog jumped out into my arms. I was so relieved."
Ms Norris left with her dog but is still shocked at what might have happened to her pet.
Giles Cooper, Hertfordshire Constabulary spokesman, said: "A local PCSO came across a woman who had found a dog in Rickmansworth High Street Tuesday, August 19. Whilst it is not a remit for police to deal with lost dogs, the PCSO wanted to assist and started to look at options to help find its owner.
"A short time later the PCSO was approached by a man who claimed to know the dog’s owner. He gave his details, including an address, and took the dog. Subsequent enquiries by the owner of the dog resulted in them being reunited with their pet."
PCSO walks free from court after being cleared of repeatedly spanking bottom of gay male colleague
Josephine Browne, 50, was accused of sexual assault and common assault after allegedly slapping her co-worker on the backside six times leaving marks at a London police station
By Gemma Mullin 3 September, 2014
Browne was said to have developed an ‘unhealthy’ interest with the young officer and was purportedly exposed her bra to him, offered to massage him and behaved provocatively towards him in a lift.
She denied the allegations throughout the three-day trial at Southwark Crown Court and yesterday a jury took less than an hour to clear her of the sexual assault charge – and today she was cleared of the remaining charge.
Judge Deborah Taylor discharging her criticised the way the incident had been investigated by police.
She said: ‘As far as the prosecution of this matter is concerned may I just say that the initial investigation by the officer who gave evidence in this court was particularly unsatisfactory and that should be passed back to those concerned.
‘The fact that he invited the complainant to seek support from other officers rather than take responsibility gives great cause for concern from someone of his experience.’
Peter Ryan, a retired police sergeant and Browne’s former boss, confessed he had asked the ‘tearful’ complainant to seek support from other officers on the team after he was informed of the allegations.
Giving evidence Browne, of Regents Park, London, had denied spanking her colleague and said: ‘That is not something I would do to somebody in or out of duty.’
She said there was ‘banter’ with her colleagues but strenuously denied touching the complainant or trying to seduce him.
Her accuser compared the alleged peeping tom incident as ‘like something out of Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho movie’ and said he felt more comfortable dealing with criminals.
He said the spanking incident, alleged to have occurred whilst he carried a filing cabinet through the building with a colleague, was ‘the final straw.’
But Browne remained adamant and said: ‘At no point have I sexually assaulted him or any member of that group,’ she said.
‘The only thing I have done is put my hands on someone’s shoulders but not in a sexual way.
Bakewell PCSOs chat to public about safety
PCSO Ian Phipps and PCSO Hayley Grundy visited the Co-Operative Store, in Market Street, Bakewell, to speak to residents about increasing their security and protect themselves from crime
By Derbyshire Times 28 August, 2014
A pair of PCSOs set up shop to offer car security advice to shoppers as part of a forcewide drive.
PCSO Ian Phipps and PCSO Hayley Grundy visited the Co-Operative Store, in Market Street, Bakewell, to speak to residents about increasing their security and protect themselves from crime.
Police in Derbyshire have been tackling car crime in the county throughout August as vehicles are often left insecure or with the windows down during the summer months.