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Couple 'used charity cash to pay their mortgage'

A COUPLE who ran a health charity milked the fund of tens of thousands of pounds over two years, a court was told yesterday.

Southwark Crown Court, London, was told Victor and Janis Mayhead each earned more than pounds 24,000 a year working for the Hospital Fund Appeal Society. But although they did raise funds for hospital equipment, it was alleged they also swindled pounds 48,000 from the charity they had helped to set up in 1986.

John Williams, for the prosecution, said Mr Mayhead, 46, and his wife, 44, of Higham, Kent, paid cash from the charity's bank account into their building society to cover a pounds 500-a-week mortgage, then made false entries in the charity's accounts.

The couple were jointly charged with two counts of false accounting and one count of furnishing false information. Mr Mayhead pleaded guilty to all charges but Mrs Mayhead denied them all.

Her trial, expected to last three days, continues.