Home   News   Article

Fraud trial latest: Former Priory finance director was caught up in a “maelstrom”

Court news.
Court news.

The former finance director of the Priory Federation of Academies – which includes Grantham’s Priory Ruskin Academy – was caught up in a “maelstrom” not of his own choosing, a jury was told today (Thursday).

Stephen Davies, 58, has denied he did anything wrong regarding payments made to the organisation’s former chief executive Richard Gilliland, who is on trial alongside him at Lincoln Crown Court.

Giles Beddloe, defending Davies, told the jury his client was one step removed from the case against Mr Gilliland.

Addressing the courtroom in his closing speech Mr Beddloe said: “Mr Davies by any account is a less controversial, charismatic and colourful individual. He is an ordinary man.

“His first love was teaching and the welfare of his students. Sadly for him he got caught up in this maelstrom. This case is not of his choosing. He did not want to be placed in this position.”

Mr Beddloe asked the jury: “You may consider if Mr Gilliland was not on trial then Mr Davies would not be here.”

The prosecution claim that Mr Davies assisted Mr Gilliland in making three payments because he feared for his job was simply not credible, Mr Beddloe told them.

“What evidence has been put forward by the prosecution to say his job would have been put in jeopardy if those payments were not done?,” Mr Beddloe asked. “There was no evidence because it is an absurd suggestion.”

Mr Beddloe told the jury there was also no personal benefit to Mr Davies. “He obviously did not gain from this, it is an indisputable proposition.”

During his evidence Davies insisted there were “sound business reasons” for the Federation paying for training courses for Mr Gilliland’s son, Kia Richardson. He also said that overtime payments of more than £4,000 paid out to Mr Richardson for overtime payments were justified.

Mr Beddloe told the jury: “Kia Richardson is nothing to do with Mr Davies. He has no interest in Kia Richardson benefiting from this.”

Davies, 58, of Abingdon Avenue, Lincoln, denies three charges of fraud by abuse of position.

Richard Gilliland ,64, who now lives in Spain, denies seven charges of fraud by abuse of position on dates between October 2008 and November 2011.

The trial continues.


Iliffe Media does not moderate comments. Please click here for our house rules.

People who post abusive comments about other users or those featured in articles will be banned.

Thank you. Your comment has been received and will appear on the site shortly.


Terms of Comments

We do not actively moderate, monitor or edit contributions to the reader comments but we may intervene and take such action as we think necessary, please click here for our house rules.

If you have any concerns over the contents on our site, please either register those concerns using the report abuse button, contact us here.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies - Learn More