Stevenage FC Recruiter Embezzled £15k for Gambling

1 Aug 2020

Ian Morris, the former recruiter for the Stevenage Football Club academy, has been found guilty of two counts of fraud by the St. Albans Crown Court. Morris embezzled over £15K that was supposed to go to children, after giving 64 parents his bank account details instead of providing the account details for Stevenage FC.
The 38-year old was caught pants down by the club in 2019 where he later confessed that being addicted to gambling is what led him to commit fraud. He pleaded guilty of two counts of fraud at S.t Albans Crown Court: fraud by false representation and fraud by abuse of position. And right now he is working as a cleaner to pay back the club.
According to the prosecutor, Morris was in a trustworthy position (the head of academy recruitment) and exploited it by swapping the parents’ bank account details for his needs. According to the court case proceedings, Morris was billing the parents for kit and subscriptions and instead used the money to fund his gambling. The fraud was disclosed in 2018 during an internal audit, and it was later determined that Morris was in a ‘dark’ place after his marriage fell apart, then resorted to gambling as a distraction.
He was sentenced for 12 months in prison but his prison time was deferred for two years until he finished his debt first which was ordered to be paid monthly – £400 a month.
His club, Stevenage FC finished last in League Two and are due to be demoted to the National League. However, their fate is still to be decided as it was appealed by the English Football League.
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