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Man who dressed up as naval officer sentenced for fraud - London

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A man who dressed up as a naval officer so he could fraudulently collect charity money has been given a community order.

Alex Foster, aged 45, wore the costume and stood with a charity bucket at Wembley Park underground station, during the NFL event on 2 October 2016.

Foster, of Leyton Grange in Leyton, had collected more than £200 in donations before a slight error on his uniform brought him to the attention of BTP officers.

Foster was arrested and charged with one count of fraud by false representation and one count of possession of articles for use in fraud.

He was found guilty by a jury at Blackfriars Crown Court on 8 March and sentenced to a two month community order and curfew, as well as the forfeiture and destruction of his uniform and charity bucket.

Inspector Dan Tanner said: “Foster wore a convincing uniform and exploited the popularity of military charities by fraudulently collecting donations from the travelling public at a busy sporting event.

“He did, however, wear an incorrect medal ribbon which initially brought him to Police attention.

“In a short space of time before his arrest, he had already collected over £200 which he intended to keep for himself.

“In addition to his sentence, the judge ordered the destruction of the uniform and his charity collection bucket.”

The arrest was made as part of Operation Sovereign – a police operation targeting fraudulent charity collecting on the rail network.

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