A crooked Help for Heroes coordinator stole more than £160,000 from his elderly mother-in-law’s bank account in order to fund his gambling addiction.
Serial fraudster Timothy Grantham, 68, spent almost £90,000 of Elizabeth McIntosh’s money at the Grosvenor Casino in Dundee.
His offences came to light after Mrs McIntosh’s care home fees went into arrears.
Grantham, who was a volunteer coordinator for the Fife branch of Help for Heroes, has been warned he is facing a jail sentence after pleading guilty at Dundee Sheriff Court.
“You are a thoroughly dishonest person,” Sheriff Richard McFarlane said.
“You have to be under no illusions that a custodial sentence is very much at the forefront of my mind.”
The court was told how Grantham had previously served prison sentences in England for fraud and theft.
He formerly ran a charity for ex-servicemen called Wounded in Service and was involved in a group that hosted golf outings for the forces.
The former charity fundraiser served in the Armed Forces for 32 years.
Grantham’s wife, Lesley McIntosh, appeared in court last year in relation to the theft but charges against her were dropped.
In March 2011, she was given power of attorney for her mother, alongside her sister Sheila Rodger.
Grantham was given access to her multiple bank accounts by his wife.
Care home payments missed
Elizabeth McIntosh was moved to St Andrews House care home in 2016 after being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
Her house was sold for more than £140,000 which was meant to pay for her care package.
However, an investigation was launched after care home payments were missed.
Fiscal depute Lynne Mannion said: “The witness McIntosh died in April 2019. Subscriptions and payments for facilities were paid from her accounts.
“During 2016 and 2017, regular payments were made to the Grosvenor Casino in excess of £16,000 and in excess of £19,000 was removed in cash withdrawals.
“Between August 2016 and February 2019, the care package fell into arrears.
“The care home administrator became aware of issues when a cheque previously paid to them by the accused from his joint account for £7,152.72 was rejected by the bank.”
Shopped by his wife
The care home continued to send invoices each month but these were not settled.
Several five figure cheques were presented to the home but they were refused by the bank.
The manager maintained contact with Grantham about the unpaid debts and was given a copy of the power of attorney, unaware that Ms McIntosh’s sister was listed.
Ms McIntosh later made her sister aware of the issue and she made her own investigations.
It was revealed how Ms McIntosh attended at St Andrews Police Office to report her husband for stealing from her mother’s bank account without her knowledge.
She told officers Grantham confessed to her he had spent between £80,000 and £90,000 of her mother’s money in a casino in Dundee.
The care home arrears of £62,271.81 had been repaid which included a £2,000 payment from Ms McIntosh’s sister.
In total, Grantham stole £162,225.27 from Elizabeth McIntosh with £82,541.20 being paid back.
Attempts to repay money
Grantham, of Links Road, Lundin Links, pled guilty to stealing the money on Aikman Place, St Andrews between January 1 2016 and February 14 2019.
Solicitor Ross Donnelly urged Sheriff McFarlane to call for reports owing to the age of Grantham’s convictions and his ongoing treatment for lung cancer.
He said: “Obviously it’s a serious matter. He is fairly realistic about what the ultimate disposal may be.
“There are ongoing efforts being made to source the outstanding £80,000. A fairly high sum has been repaid already.”
Grantham’s bail order was allowed to continue for the preparation of reports.