Woman claiming to have cancer to defraud charities of more than 99,000 people imprisoned • independent.ie


Patricia Robertshaw, who claimed to have cancer to be able to defraud the charity she was working in, was jailed Photo credit: Danny Lawson / PA Wire
Patricia Robertshaw, who claimed to have cancer to be able to defraud the charity she was working in, was jailed Photo credit: Danny Lawson / PA Wire

A woman who claimed to have cancer to defraud charity for which she was working on more than £ 85,000 (€ 99,000) was jailed by a judge who told her that she had not shown any shame.

Patricia Robertshaw, 42, claimed that she was undergoing radiation therapy to earn three months of Yorkshire Cancer Research disease salary in Harrogate, where she worked as an event manager.

During her absence, the defendant used false diploma certificates to apply for jobs in other companies, after using the same fraudulent documents to gain access to the charity's post.

The York Crown Court learned how Robertshaw, of Gisburn Road in Barrowford, Lancashire, had produced three "fictional" degrees.

They earned a Master of Science degree from the University of Leeds and a Ph.D. in Philosophy from the same university, as well as a Masters in Project Management from Leeds Metropolitan University.

Prosecutors explained how these documents helped her earn an increase of £ 10,250 a year for seven months, for a total of £ 86,833 (€ 101,600) while she was working for charity between September 2015 and November 2017.

It was explained how Robertshaw's network of lies had collapsed when other charity workers had scanned the QR codes that she had submitted on sick note forms. and found that they were disabled.

She pleaded guilty to four counts of fraud and one false.

Judge Andrew Stubbs QC sentenced him to four years and five months in jail on Thursday: "Integrated with charity as you were, you would have known the good that money would have done."

Speaking of Roberthsaw's attempts to feign cancer, he said: "These claims were as false as the qualifications you used.

"It made you pretend, without any apparent sense of shame, that you had cancer while working for a cancer charity.

"The charity relies on the generosity of the public, so those who should have benefited from the research have been affected to some extent by the accused's fraud."

Robert Sandford, prosecutor, explained how Robertshaw began claiming to have cancer in April 2016, claiming that she was being treated at the Airedale General Hospital in Bradford and at Barrowford Surgery in Nelson, NY. Lancashire, before being discovered in November 2017.

Her employers had twice offered her independent health assessments, but she had twice refused and had even gone so far as to falsify sick notes.

While on sick leave for three months, she applied for event and business leadership roles at Manchester City Council and as Chief Revenue Officer for Burnley's Pendleside Hospice.

The court learned that she had received a conditional offer from the first that would have paid her a salary of £ 49,313 (€ 58,000) and was about to get an offer from the latter, including the reported salary was £ 36,075 (€ 42,000). ).

Previously, she had been instructed to send student evaluations to the corresponding examination panel.

The court learned that, in order to protect herself from her work, she had falsified certificates attesting that they had successfully completed their qualifications, which means that 55 students received invalid certificates.

The court heard that the university had to pay £ 500 (€ 585) in settlements to 36 of those students who were studying for leadership and management qualifications.

Mr. Sandford said: "As a result, these students thought that they had valid certificates, only to discover that their hard work had been in vain."

Catherine Silverton, on defense, explained how her client had a history of mental health issues and borderline personality disorder.

She said: "The accused wishes to express through me his deepest remorse and deepest regret for these offenses.

"She recognizes the harm done to all victims."

Press Association