COURT: Man denies stealing more than £50,000 from a hospital support group

A GEDNEY man has appeared in court charged with stealing more than £50,000 from a Norfolk hospital support group.Martin Whatling denied 16 charges of theft and four of false accounting totalling £57,315 when he appeared at King s Lynn Magistrates Court.

A GEDNEY man has appeared in court charged with stealing more than £50,000 from a Norfolk hospital support group.

Martin Whatling denied 16 charges of theft and four of false accounting totalling £57,315 when he appeared at King's Lynn Magistrates' Court.

Whatling, 54, arrived at court alone and appeared in the dock wearing a black suit and a grey tie and spoke only to give his name and to enter a not guilty plea.

The 20 charges against Whatling detail amounts of cash taken from the King's Lynn Hospitals League of Friends between 2002 and 2007.


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The figures for each theft charge range from £400 to £8,125.

He was also appearing on four charges of false accounting, including falsifying end-of-year statements in 2004, 2005 and 2006 and falsifying a copy of the league's National Savings and Investment account passbook in 2007.

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Whatling, of Main Street, Gedney Dyke, Lincolnshire, was the treasurer of the league for a number of years.

Nicholas Crampton, prosecuting, said a considerable sum of money had gone missing over a period of time.

The King's Lynn Hospitals League of Friends raises money for the patients and equipment in the hospital and since it was formed in 1953 has raised more than £3m for hospitals around Lynn.

Each year around £100,000 is made through its charity shop and other fundraising events.

Last month, the league bought a £2,500 heart monitoring machine for the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, among other pieces of equipment.

Whatling was granted uncondition-al bail. He is set to be committed to crown court for trial on October 28.

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