South Yorkshire clerk used council cash to buy porn

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A TOWN clerk downloaded pornography and used a council credit card to pay for it, a court heard.

Roy Hunt, aged 70, of Alexandra Road, Swallownest, Rotherham, used a card belonging to Dronfield Town Council to pay for porn, petrol and electrical equipment and falsified the accounts.

The former clerk was found guilty of 11 charges, included purchasing two laptops and petrol with council money.

His crimes were discovered when he went on holiday and colleagues discovered a credit card statement.

He spent £349 and £401 on laptops – but stated the money had been spent on fencing and tools, and purchased over £50 worth of petrol which he entered as ‘Sainsbury’s Gifts’ in the council’s accounts.

During his trial at Chesterfield Magistrates’ Court, prosecutor Jenny Fitzgerald said that in 2002 Hunt faced a disciplinary hearing after viewing premium rate porn websites and running up a bill on the council’s credit card.

He repaid the council £616, including £130 for porn sites.

Mrs Fitzgerald said that when interviewed by police, Hunt, who was paid around £40,000 a year by the council, felt he was underpaid.

She added: “Nobody would see the credit card statements and you would follow up the purchases by falsifying the account books.

“With the large budget that you handled you thought every so often you would help yourself.”

Hunt claimed the laptops were purchased for work use and denied accessing the porn websites, claiming the credit card must have been cloned.

He is to be sentenced tomorrow.