P'boro Charity Fraudster Jailed

5 October 2011, 08:50 | Updated: 5 October 2011, 08:56

A fraudster who dressed in army clothing in a bid to cash in on charity donations has been sent back to prison.

Robert Rose, 43, pretended he was collecting donations for Help for Heroes in Peterborough city centre during September. He even wore army boots and camouflage trousers to carry out the deception.

But a Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) became suspicious of his validity when he spotted the seal to one of his collecting buckets had been broken. He challenged him and, unsatisfied with his claims, contacted the charity to see if he was an authentic collector.

Help for Heroes confirmed he was not a registered collector and Rose's image was circulated in the city centre. He was spotted by security guards outside ASDA in Viersen Platz on Sunday morning then tracked on CCTV to New Road where he was arrested.

Rose, of Berry Court, Millfield, Peterborough, pleaded guilty to fraud by false representation at Peterborough Magistrates' Court on Monday.

The convicted fraudster was on licence for robbery and was jailed for 20 weeks.

PC Jenny Herd said: "For Rose to brazenly deceive people into thinking they were donating to charity was particularly callous.

"But, thanks to a PCSO's investigations, his fraud was quickly discovered and he was circulated as wanted.

"This is a great example of partnership working. From the moment Rose was spotted by a security guard we were able to track his movements on CCTV and direct officers in to make the arrest.

"As a result he was caught red-handed, still with the bogus collecting tins."

Inspector Dominic Glazebrook said: "As someone who has taken part in the Sing For Heroes project, I'm pleased that the magistrates have taken a firm line on this type of offending.

"I hope it will deter people from seeking to profit by dishonestly claiming to be collecting for charity."