Saturday, 30 June 2018

Ritz Casino's Money Laundering Chief Jailed For Nicking £3K While A Cop

The head of anti-money laundering at Mayfair’s Ritz Hotel Casino pleaded for his freedom yesterday when jailed for stealing £3,000 from his former employers, the National Crime Agency.

Ex-police officer Alex Henderson, 31, was a counter-terrorism, drugs and money laundering investigator with the NCA before he was caught withdrawing lump sums from their account.

He pleaded guilty to stealing £3,090 from the NCA between October 13 and November 4 2016, plus a Samsung Galaxy S7 mobile phone, worth £408 between September 19 and 30.

Recorder of Westminster Judge Deborah Taylor sentenced Henderson, of Princes Park Lane, Hayes to sixteen months imprisonment for the offences.

Wiping away tears and looking at his wife in disbelief Henderson pleaded: “I can’t leave my children. I love you I’m sorry.”

As a security guard took him to the cells Henderson, who has repaid all the money, begged the judge: “Please reconsider.”

At a conference earlier this year Henderson was talking tough about companies punished for failing to enforce anti-money laundering regulations.

“I don’t have any sympathy for them. They’re very small fines for people doing a lot of wrong,’ he said. “You’re in a position of trust, you need to protect your staff, you need to protect your customers.”

He is open about his former undercover career with the NCA in his professional online profile.

Southwark Crown Court heard a credit card taken from secure storage was used at cashpoints on six occasions - for the maximum £500 each time - plus a £90 fee.

Prosecutor Miss Kerry Broome told the court: “Mr. Henderson was a NCA officer and had access to credit cards used by the agency.

“He worked with one other person and had access to the secure storage area and the PIN numbers.”

On November 15, 2016 his colleague was informed of suspicious activity on the credit card, with the PIN being used to withdraw cash.

“The card was still at the NCA and when Mr. Henderson was confronted he confessed he used the card.

“He accepted he had taken the card and the PIN and persuaded a friend to make cash withdrawals,” added Miss Broome.

The friend was questioned by police, but no charges were brought.

“He said he knew his friend was a police officer and he did it because he trusted him.

“A mobile phone had also been ordered on the NCA account and taken by Mr. Henderson for his own use.

“He immediately accepted that he had taken the money and bought the mobile phone.

“The money has not been paid back, but I understand Mr. Henderson is willing to do so,” explained Miss Broome. 

“He said his father asked him for money to pay household bills and his father was spoken to and confirmed he had asked for money, but was vague about the amounts.

“Not all the money went to Henderson snr.

“The defendant no longer works for the NCA.”

Judge Taylor told him: “You did not immediately accept the offences, you denied them. It is only when confronted with the evidence that you did accept it.

“There was some attempt to conceal evidence and a risk of suspicion falling on a co-worker.

“These are serious offences involving theft from an employer who gave you access and placed you in a position of trust.”

Friday, 29 June 2018

Carer Punched OAP, 82, In Face

A care worker at an OAP home punched a dementia-suffering resident in the face, inflicting a bleeding cut to his cheek.

Velma Lahai, 23, was employed at The Pines Care Home, West Hill, Putney, where a colleague witnessed her landing the early-morning blow on the vulnerable resident, who is also bipolar.

She was convicted of ill-treating the resident during an early-morning wake-up on December 18, last year.

Lahai of Sprewell House, Lytton Grove, Putney was sentenced to six weeks imprisonment, suspended for twelve months and ordered to complete 200 hours community service work.

She must also comply with a rehabilitation activity requirement of up to twenty days and pay £200 compensation to the victim and £100 costs.

Wimbledon Magistrates Court heard resident Jeremy Kemp, 82, is unable to look after himself and needs help changing his clothing and cleaning himself.

When Lahai and a colleague entered his room at 6am they found he was covered in his own urine.

The defendant was heard asking him: “Why did you kick me in the eye?” and punched him in the face.

Mr. Kemp immediately put his hands up to his face and blood started pouring from a wound to his cheek, which healed after two days.

He did not require hospital treatment and was cared for on site, with the wound being cleaned and dressed.

Lahai complained Mr. Kemp flicked faeces and urine into her eye and said the injury was nothing more than a 1.5cm scratch to the cheek, which quickly healed.

The victim was described in court as “extremely vulnerable” and was not able to give an account to the police or attend the trial.

Thursday, 28 June 2018

Prize-Winning Gardener Cleared Of Damaging Neighbour's Lawn But Sentenced For Harassment Campaign

Gardeners At War: Oram
A pensioner has been banned from his communal rear gardens after a harassment campaign against his neighbour, who claims he was jealous of her collecting their leafy borough’s ‘In Bloom’ prize.

Retired employment agency boss Michael Oram, 73, can now only enjoy his plants and flowers from his living-room window or by peering over the garden wall.

The private Winchester College-educated Kew Gardens volunteer found himself in the dock at Wimbledon Magistrates Court charged with causing criminal damage to ‘grass’ belonging to his downstairs neighbour.

Twice-married granddad Oram, of The Barons, Twickenham was cleared after magistrates ruled basement neighbour Jasmine McMurdo, 55, exaggerated the alleged destruction on September 27, last year.

However Oram, whose King’s Road, Chelsea agency supplied domestic staff to the aristocracy and the rich and famous, was convicted of causing her harassment between January 19 and July 31, last year.

He was sentenced to six weeks imprisonment, suspended for a year and was made subject to a two-year Criminal Behaviour Order, which bans him from the rear gardens.

He must also pay £500 compensation to Ms McMurdo, plus £998 for damaging her floor, which he was convicted of deliberately flooding and £500 costs.

Ms McMurdo collected the silver prize from the mayor of Richmond-upon-Thames for their ‘Borough in Bloom’ competition last year, Oram having also received silver for the property’s front garden.

Neighbour: Jasmine McMurdo
“You did that out of spite didn’t you?” prosecutor Ms Roz Wardell asked Oram. “You deliberately pulled up her plants. You have a vendetta against Ms McMurdo don’t you?”

Oram was filmed on a security camera pulling at the lawn behind Ms McMurdo’s flat. “The CCTV shows and elderly man removing dead foliage and weeds,” he told the court.

“When I moved in it was a jungle of brambles, an utter mess. I’ve been tending this garden since 2006 when it was an utter wreck.

“Through blood, sweat and tears and my own cost and energy I have brought it back to the garden we have today.”

Oram says he was forced to move into his flat after losing his £3m Richmond Hill home in a divorce many years ago after having an affair with he and his wife’s attractive Peruvian au pair.

“Richmond prides itself on its green-fingered inhabitants and its parks and is one of the best areas to live in London.

“I was sad that I did not have the chance to collect the prize from the mayor.

“Ms McMurdo collected it and has been claiming it was a prize she gained, which I dispute. She’s not won an award for gardening, can you produce a certificate with her name on it?

“Ms McMurdo doesn’t know anything about plants whatsoever. In fact they were planted by a previous tenant who cared for that garden.

Prize-Winner: Oram Outside Court
“These gardens are kept by me. I spend all my disposable income on it. I do love the gardens.  

“This year I’m hoping to win the gold medal.

“I was removing plants that were past their prime and plants that were growing over the communal pathway. 

‘I was weeding the lawn, taking out dandelions and moss that are destructive to the lawn.

“This has been completely twisted. Everything is twisted against me.

“This case has been brought to damage and discredit me. Ms McMurdo is paranoid and has left signs for me next to plants on sticks.

“She also left me a note saying saying that she did not like to see me reclining in my bathing costume in the Summer.

“It is insulting for a man of my age and my high-birth and high-education compared to some people in this case who can’t even spell properly.

“I’m up against people who hate me,” added Oram, claiming his car and garden rockery has been vandalised.

“I’ve put up with hell and high water from this woman. It’s a vendetta.”

He denied deliberately drilling holes in his bathroom floor to flood Ms McMurdo. “There were faults with my washing machine.”

Even though still subject to a restraining order after a previous harassment conviction against the neighbour Oram insisted: “She issued death threats to me with a broken bottle to cut my neck.”

Clearing Oram of criminal damage magistrate Mr. David Martin announced: “Ms McMurdo said he tore up clumps of Umbrella Bamboo and Lavender, but we do not see that on the CCTV.”

When making the ‘Crimbo’ order against Oram the pensioner told the magistrate: “They are trying to extinguish the basic right of an Englishman to be in his garden.”

Ban: Oram Cannot Set Foot In Garden
Ms McMurdo said: “I have suffered harassment over the years. Mr. Oram has targeted me to drive me out and I have often been in tears.

“He has tried to make my flat uninhabitable and had now turned to vandalising my vegetables and flowers.”

She said Oram sent her a text warning: “If we don’t find peace the future is going to be very grim for you and your son.”

The NHS employee added: “I’ve been torn in two. I feel so unsafe with Mr. Oram living above me.

“I feel on edge all the time. I have a feeling of dread in my chest. I never know what I’m going to walk into.

“I just wait for something to happen. I have no enjoyment at being at home anymore.”

Wednesday, 27 June 2018

Young Woman Accused Of Smuggling Cannabis Into Prison

A young Newton Abbot woman, accused of smuggling drugs into a mens' prison appeared in court today.

Lillian Baker, 22, of 25 Clifford Drive, Heathfield is charged with possessing cannabis resin at south London's HMP Wandsworth on May 26.

She is also charged with one count of giving a prisoner, Nicholas little, a prohibited article, namely herbal cannabis.

Baker was bailed to appear at Kingston-upon-Thames Crown Court on July 24 for a plea and trial preparation hearing. 

Tuesday, 26 June 2018

Benefit Cheat Gets Suspended Sentence For Claiming While Abroad

Thomas: No Smoke Without Fire
A woman who continued claiming four different benefits while abroad during a three-and-a-half year scam has received a suspended prison sentence.

Lorraine Thomas, 60, of Bevington Road, North Kensington claims she had to flee the UK due to violent domestic abuse.

Thomas pleaded guilty to five separate counts of dishonestly failing to disclose information to the Department of Work & Pensions and the London Borough of Kensington & Chelsea, namely that she was not a UK resident.

She was sentenced to nine months imprisonment, suspended for eighteen months.

The prosecution were given seven days to consider any application for compensation.

The charges relate to claims for Income Support; Employment Support Allowance; Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit between February 22, 2012 and August 2, 2015.

Thomas, a first-time offender, displayed mobility issues entering and exiting the secure dock at Southwark Crown Court.

Monday, 25 June 2018

Bus Pervert Who Molested Five Teens Is Hunted

Police are hunting a north London bus pervert after five teenage females complained of being groped.
Officers from the Roads and Transport Policing Command are appealing for help to identify this man suspected of sexual assaults.
At 6.30pm on January 25, the suspect was seen to board the route 279 bus at Tesco Ponders End and got off at Angel, Edmonton.
Whilst on the crowded bus, the suspect sexually assaulted an 18-year-old woman standing up and later sitting down.
He continued to assault her until she got off the bus.
At 7.20am on January 29, the suspect boarded the route 279 bus at White Hart Lane.
When a 14-year-old schoolgirl boarded the bus at Scotland Green, the suspect sexually assaulted her before disembarking at Enfield Highway.
At 7.45am on February 21, a 14-year-old girl boarded the route 279 bus at the Nightingale Road bus stop.
Whilst standing on the bus, the suspect sexually assaulted her.
Only when the victim disembarked at Ingersoll Road did the suspect stop and go to the upper deck.
At 8.00am on March 12, a 15-year-old girl boarded the route 34 bus at Cambridge Roundabout.
Whilst standing on the busy bus, she was sexually assaulted. The victim alighted at Green Lanes.
At 8.55am on March 15, a 17-year-old girl boarded a route 102 bus at Fortismere Avenue heading towards Bounds Green.
Whilst sitting upstairs, the suspect sat in a nearby seat and played with himself whilst watching the victim.
The victim got off the bus at Palmerston Road and the suspect remained on the bus.
The suspect has short black hair and a thin beard along his jaw.
He was wearing a two-tone padded blue jacket and blue jeans.
Detective Sergeant Edward Coleman, leading the investigation says: "We know of at least five offences committed by the same suspect on crowded buses.
“We would like to hear from anyone who may know this man's identity.
"We also want to hear from anyone who may have been the victim of a sexual assault while travelling on a bus."
Anyone with any information is asked to call Detective Sergeant Edward Coleman on 020 3054 6710 or 101 quoting reference CAD 2343/12Mar or tweet @MetCC.
To call anonymously, please contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Sunday, 24 June 2018

Teen Slashed By Sword-Wielding Gang: Four Suspects Wanted

Police are hunting a sword-wielding gang after a 17 year-old college student was chased and slashed in east London.
Police were called just before 6.00pm on Tuesday, April 17 to reports of a fight at Star Lane Park in West Ham.
The teen was found to be suffering from a slash wound to his right arm.
He had been making his way home after finishing college with his friends, when he noticed a group of hooded males running towards them, with one waving a sword.
His friends all ran off and he was chased into Birch Close, where he slipped and fell over.
The group caught up, surrounded him and slashed him as he tried to defend himself.
The group, were seen to board a train at the Star Lane Docklands Light Railway station.
The London Ambulance Service took the victim to an east London hospital where he received several stitches before being discharged.
The suspects are described as:
Suspect 1 is described as an Asian man, wearing a black hat, blue padded jacket over a green hooded top, green tracksuit trousers and brown shoes.
Suspect 2 is described as a black teenager, wearing a black jacket with ‘Crosshatch’ written down the left arm, black trousers and black shoes.
Suspect 3 is described as a white man, with a short brown beard. He was wearing a green hooded jacket over a dark blue hooded top, blue jeans and white trainers.
Suspect 4 is described as a black man with a beard. He was wearing a dark blue jacket over a grey hooded top, dark blue trousers and white trainers.
Detective Constable Georgina Hebron, from Newham Borough, said: “This is a nasty unprovoked attack on a teenager who was walking home from college.
We are appealing for anyone who may have seen the attack to come forward.”
Anyone with any information are asked to call detectives at Newham via 101 quoting reference CAD 6371/17Apr18 or tweet @MetCC.
To call anonymously, please contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Friday, 22 June 2018

Ritz Hotel's Dodgy Cash Boss Awaits Fate For £3K Theft From Former Police Employers

Ex-Cop Henderson
The head of anti-money laundering at Mayfair’s Ritz Hotel Casino, who stole £3,000 while a serving police officer, has had sentencing adjourned for a probation report.

Alex Henderson, 31, was a counter-terrorism, drugs and money laundering investigator with the National Crime Agency (NCA) before he was caught withdrawing lump sums from their account.

He appeared on bail at Southwark Crown Court, where Judge Jeffrey Pegden QC ordered a pre-sentence report.

“Yes, he’s a man of good character, but it is a serious case,” said the judge, ordering Henderson to return on June 29.

He pleaded guilty to stealing £3,090 from the NCA between October 13 and November 4 2016, plus a Samsung Galaxy S7 mobile phone, worth £408 between September 19 and 30.

Henderson, of Princes Park Lane, Hayes admitted the offences at his first appearance at Westminster Magistrates Court.

At a conference earlier this year Henderson was talking tough about companies punished for failing to enforce anti-money laundering regulations.

“I don’t have any sympathy for them. They’re very small fines for people doing a lot of wrong,’ he said. “You’re in a position of trust, you need to protect your staff, you need to protect your customers.”

He is open about his former undercover career with the NCA in his professional online profile.

A credit card taken from secure storage was used at cashpoints on six occasions - for the maximum £500 each time - plus a £90 fee.

Thursday, 21 June 2018

'Eddie Catz' Kids Playcentre Founder Charged With Spying On Girls And Women

The wealthy boss of a well-known children’s soft play centre chain has appeared in court charged with filming girls and women at his business’s toilets and changing rooms and in a swimming pool’s private cubicles.

Darren Johnson, 51, resigned from Eddie Catz after he was arrested and charged with nine counts of voyeurism, including the filming two 14 year-old girls at a local leisure centre.

He founded the nationwide play centre, which has a tie-in with Mothercare, with his wife Maria over a decade ago and the couple share a £1.3m home.

The charges relate to filming at his Earlsfield play centre in south-west London and the nearby Putney Leisure Centre. 

Johnson, of Rodway Road, Putney Village appeared on bail at Wimbledon Magistrates Court, which sent him to Kingston-upon-Thames Crown Court.

He is charged with five counts of voyeurism for sexual gratification between January 1, 2005 and December 31, 2012.

Johnson is charged with two more similar offences relating to between January 1, 2016 and June 12, last year.

He is further charged with two more counts of voyeurism relating to the two 14 year-old schoolgirls at the leisure centre on June 5, last year. 

Prosecutor Ms Amanda McCabe told the court the teenage girls were in the same cubicle when they noticed somebody was holding an iPhone under the partition.

“The girls became very distressed,” added the prosecutor, explaining Johnson was identified via the centre’s CCTV and the distinctive backpack her was carrying. 

Officers raided his house on June 12, last year and seized a computer, iPad, a mobile phone and the backpack caught on CCTV.

“Images of several women in varying degrees of undress from the private staff changing room at Eddie Catz are found.”

The court was also told there were peepholes in the toilets at the play centre.

He was bailed on conditions he does not enter any Eddie Catz centre; uses mixed use and womens changing-rooms; contacts complainants, staff and witnesses or uses a camera, phone or video recorder to take images.

Wednesday, 20 June 2018

"Couple Of Glasses Of Wine" Put NHS PA Over Drink-Drive Limit

Wimbledon Magistrates Court
An NHS administrator was caught drink-driving after “a couple of glasses of wine” when police spotted her looking at her phone while behind the wheel.

Yvonne Stupple, 58, from West Brompton, a PA for Chelsea and Westminster NHS Trust says she is “mortified” by her arrest and court appearance.

She pleaded guilty to driving her Chevrolet vehicle with excess alcohol in her breath in York Road, Battersea at 10.25pm on May 25.

Her reading was 41 microgrammes - slightly over the 35 limit.

Wimbledon Magistrates Court heard officers pulled Stupple over after seeing her phone in her hand although she says her vehicle was stationary at the time.

As far as the officers were concerned she failed to pull over satisfactorily and appeared confused.

They followed her around a large roundabout and she stopped opposite a petrol station.

When asked if she had been drinking Stupple confessed she had a few glasses of wine.

Her lawyer told the court: “It is a case of misjudgement. She did not feel she was under the influence of alcohol.

“She waited a few hours and thought she was fine to drive.

“She puts her hands up and takes full responsibility.

“She is very embarrassed and is remorseful. She was stationary when she looked at her phone.

“She is mortified she is in this position after a couple of glasses of wine.”

Stupple was disqualified from driving for twelve months and fined £500, with £85 costs and ordered to pay a £50 victim surcharge.

Tuesday, 19 June 2018

Greenwich Observatory's Public Astronomer Charged With Downloading Child Porn

A Greenwich observatory astronomer, accused of making indecent photographs of children, has appeared in court for the first time.

Marek Kukula, 49, who has had a senior role at the Royal Museums Greenwich for the last decade, holds the title of Public Astronomer.

Kukula, of Millennium Square, Borough appeared on bail at Camberwell Green Magistrates Court, which sent him to Inner London Crown Court.

He is charged that on or before October 5, last year he made 34 Category A indecent images of a child.

He also faces two further charges that on or before the same date he made 107 Category B and 266 Category C indecent images of a child.

Kukula describes himself as an experienced science communicator with a background in astronomy research at UK universities and NASA’s Space Telescope Science Institute.

At the Royal Observatory Greenwich he oversees science content and exhibitions and public programmes and is a spokesperson for the landmark institution.

He is the author of two books: ‘The Scientific Secrets of Doctor Who’ and ‘The Intimate Universe.’

While a project manager and researcher in residence at the University of Edinburgh he managed a national scheme to train young researchers and match them with secondary schools.

He has a degree in Physics with Astrophysics and a PhD in Radio Astronomy from the University of Manchester.

He was bailed to appear at the crown court on July 10.

Monday, 18 June 2018

Lord's Lover Accused Of Pigs Blood Vandalism Of Pied a Terre

Outside Court: Lizzie
The ex-Olympic showjumping lover of Tory Lord David Prior broke into their former love-nest and used pigs blood to daub the walls with offensive words and symbols, a court heard.

Lizzie Purbrick, 63, of Northgate Hall Farm, The Street, Warham, Wells-next-the-Sea, Norfolk denies the charge.

She appeared for the first time at Camberwell Green Magistrates Court charged with burgling the house in Cardigan Street, Lambeth, with intent to do unlawful damage on May 9.

Purbrick, a member of Great Britain’s 1980 equestrian team, will return to the same court for trial on July 17.

Her lawyer Mr. Simon Nicholls told the court: “It is said she has gone to her ex-lover’s flat in London with two pints of pigs blood and daubed the walls with words and symbols.

“Lord Prior is the complainant and the address is the location where they would meet.”

Purbrick won the Amanda Dish at 1984’s Badmington Horse Trials and in 1978 competed at the World Championships in Lexington, Kentucky.

Pigs Blood: Lord Prior's House
In 1981 she was a member of the gold medal-winning British team at the European Championships.

Outside court she corrected her lawyer and said “five litres” of pigs blood was used to daub “offensive and explicit” words inside the property.

Lord Prior’s official title is Baron Prior of Brampton and the Charterhouse School and Cambridge-educated peer married Caroline Holmes on St. Valentine’s Day, 1987 and they have a son and daughter.

He was a Conservative MP for North Norfolk between 1997 and 2001 is currently Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy in the House of Lords.

The former investment banker, 63, is the chairman of University College Hospital and was the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health in David Cameron’s government.

The defence have requested his presence at the trial for cross-examination.

Sunday, 17 June 2018

Octogenarian Denies Double Pub Grope

An octogenarian accused of a double sex assault at a pub near London Bridge has appeared in court for the first time.

Jaime Arrochelalobo, 80, of 108 Brinklow House, Torquay Street, Paddington denies the allegations.

He is charged with two counts of sexually assaulting a female at St. Christopher's Inn, Borough High Street, Southwark on March 25.

Arrochelalobo appeared on bail at Camberwell Green Magistrates Court.

A trial date was set for July 24 at Croydon Magistrates Court.

Saturday, 16 June 2018

Boozy Cricket Fan Bit Lord's Security Guard At Test Match

Lord's Cricket Ground
A drunken cricket fan, who had been drinking beer and champagne at a Lord's test match, assaulted two security guards – biting one of them - as he tried to re-enter the ground.

Construction company boss Ross Allen, 39, of Westfield Close, Gravesend had attended the England v Pakistan match with family and friends.

The father-of-two pleaded guilty at Westminster Magistrates Court to assaulting Earl Annakie and Djan Salih and being drunk and disorderly at the St. John's Wood ground on May 25.

The magistrate told him: “This was a most unfortunate episode and there were certain aggravating features.

“You were drunk and this involved security staff.

“It was a lengthy episode and there was a bite and that must have caused a great deal of anguish.”

However, the magistrate added: “We appreciate you have shown remorse and that you have been under stress.”

Allen was ordered to complete 40 hours community service and was fined £100 with £85 costs, plus an £85 victim surcharge.

He must also pay £500 compensation to Djan Salih, the security guard he bit.

Friday, 15 June 2018

Russian Mobile Phone Tycoon Denies Punching Uber Taxi

Outside Court: Chichvarkin
A drunken Russian mobile phone tycoon - once reportedly worth £1.2 billion - dented an Uber driver’s bonnet with an angry punch during an evening out with friends in Soho, a court heard.

Evgeny Chichvarkin, 43, who sold retail chain Yevroset for approximately £280m in September, 2008 denies punching the white BMW, which he had booked, and will stand trial on August 17.

He lives in exile at a £6.6m apartment in The Little Boltons, West Brompton and in August, 2012 he launched new venture, award-winning Hedonism Wines in Davies Street, Mayfair. 

Chichvarkin pleaded not guilty at Westminster Magistrates Court to causing criminal damage to the three-litre vehicle, belonging to Lefter Petronel-Sebastian in Rupert Street on December 9, last year.

Prosecutor Mr. Jonathan Bryan said: “The complainant is an Uber driver booked to take the defendant. The defendant didn’t arrive on time so the Uber driver drove off and stopped at the lights.

“The defendant tried to stop him and when he was told the booking had been cancelled in anger and frustration he bangs his fist down on the bonnet causing the dent.

“Two police officers did not see the incident, but one of them says he did hear a bang. The officers give evidence that he is drunk at the time.

“The complainant can say there is a dent there that was not there before.”

There are no pictures of the alleged damage and Chichvarkin can be heard on the officers’ body-worn cameras asking: “Where is the damage? I haven’t damaged the vehicle. Where’s the damage?”

He was arrested that evening and held in police custody overnight and questioned by police the next day.

Chichvarkin’s lawyer told the court his client runs businesses and “invests heavily” in the UK and a criminal conviction would be “very damaging.”

He was bailed to stand trial at City of London Magistrates Court.

Chichvarkin is the founder of Russia’s largest mobile phone retailer Yevroset and at one time was the richest man under thirty-five years-old in his country.

He was the winner of Ernst & Young’s ‘Entrepreneur of the Year 2005 and also received Russian awards including the ‘Order of Glory of Russia’ and ‘Order of glory of the Fatherland.’

Chichvarkin has lived in exile in London for the past decade, campaigning against Russian corruption and Vladimir Putin as a member of the Right Cause political party.

Thursday, 14 June 2018

Reality Star "Suicidal" After Stun-Gun Cocaine Arrest Damaged His Brand

A finalist of ITV2’s ’Survival Of The Fittest’ felt suicidal at damaging his ‘brand’ after police found an electric stun gun and cocaine during a raid on his bedroom in his mother’s house.

Fitness trainer and model David Pearse Lundy, 26, was woken in bed by police looking for firearms and weapons during the early-morning search.

Lundy, of Aragon Road, Morden pleaded guilty at Kingston-upon-Thames Crown Court to possessing a prohibited weapon and two small paper wraps of cocaine on December 21, last year.

He was sentenced to six months imprisonment, suspended for twelve months and ordered to perform 120 hours community service.

Lundy was also fined £75 for the cocaine charge and ordered to pay £670 costs.

The raid was before he made the final of the show - dubbed Love Island’s winter alternative - which was shot in South Africa featuring teams of Boys v Girls.

Fortunately the charge was reduced from a more serious one, which carries a minimum of five years imprisonment. 

“A doctor’s report describes the depressive and anxiety issues that this defendant suffers from and the fear engendered in him from damaging the brand he has worked so hard for,” said Mr. Oliver Blunt QC, defending.

“He has had thoughts of suicide, but has been persuaded from that as his mother needs his assistance and support.”   

Prosecutor Mr. Nicholas Dunham told the court: “Police officers executing a search warrant went to David Lundy’s home address.

“The door was opened by his mother, who said he was upstairs asleep in bed.

“Officers went upstairs and woke him up and asked if there were any guns or weapons in the room.

“He said there was a torch with an electric thing on the end in a chest of drawers.

“The officer opened the drawer and found the black torch described by Mr. Lundy.

“They searched the wardrobe and Mr. Lundy directed them to two paper wraps and said: ‘It’s coke. Some stuff for a Christmas night out.’

“He was arrested and made no reply and taken to the police station, where he made no comment in interview.”

The ‘torch’ was tested by expert Nicola Hater, who said: “It was a duel-purpose hand-held shock device, known as a stun gun with a torch attached to it.

“It was covered in black tape and the meta heads were flush with the outer casing. It was powered by an integral chargeable battery.”

The stun gun was tested and was in working order, delivering an electric charge.

Mr. Dunham added: “Discharges are meant to incapacitate by interfering with muscle control, causing spasms, pain, mental confusion and loss of balance.”

Lundy’s QC said imprisonment would prevent him participating in  a ’Survival of the Fittest’ v ‘Eastenders’ charity football match on June 23 to raise funds for the John Hopkins Trust cancer charity.

“You could not have clearly more co-operation from the defendant. It was he that pointed out to the police where this device would be located in a drawer in a chest of drawers and where this minute amount of cocaine would be located.

“In fairness to Mr. Lundy he could not have been more co-operative at the scene with the police officers.

“He is by way of occupation a freelance model and personal trainer.

“By way of notoriety he participated in ITV2’s ‘Survival of the Fittest’, an eight-week engagement and in fact reached the final.”

The court heard Lundy is due to take over management of a government-run Woking fitness centre on July 1, on a salary of £23,500.

Lundy assists his petite mother Tracey Jane Lundy in caring for his sister Emma, 29, who has cerebral palsy and severe epilepsy.

“She has considerable handicaps,” said Mr. Blunt. “His mother needs the assistance of David to care for her severely disabled daughter.

“She simply cannot cope without the assistance of her son.”

Recently Lundy’s anti-anxiety prescription was doubled.

“Despite suffering from depression and anxiety himself he has helped others as an ambassador for that condition.”

A woman suffering cancer of the cervix wrote a reference for Lundy describing him as “sincere, dependable, loyal and honest.”

Lundy was given the stun gun a year and a half earlier while employed as a bouncer at the West End’s Hippodrome nightclub.

“While he was working there he was given the object by a co-employee. 

‘It was found in a chest of drawers. Mr. Lundy had not handled it for over eighteen months and dumped it in a drawer. It was not even charged.”

He is a volunteer with ‘Kingston Street Pastors’. “Mr. Lundy has a great relationship with Kingston Police,” said the QC.

The lawyer also produced a reference commending Lundy for staying with and helping a bleeding young woman suffering a serious head wound outside the Hippodrome.

He has contracts with three Public Relations companies, including Toto and Streamline. as he pursues a celebrity career and fear he may fall foul of their “unacceptable behaviour” clauses and be dumped.

“There is a risk that Mr. Lundy’s pleas could result in termination of his contracts. That he has damaged his reputation,’ added the QC.

“There are a lot of really positive features about this young man, who appears before the court for the first time and is of good character.”

Judge Georgina Kent told Lundy: “It’s dangerous because weapons like these can be used to incapacitate and in the wrong hands be used to inflict serious harm.

“It is sold in some countries as self-defence, but not in this country. 

‘You have no previous convictions. From what I have heard you are a hard-working man of positive character with medical issues of your own and relied on by your family.

“You worked as a doorman. You knew this weapon was prohibited and potentially dangerous.

“As a fitness instructor you do not need me to tell you how dangerous Class A drugs are.”