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Man was duped out of pounds 3,500 for 'son'

A 60-YEAR-OLD woman who tricked a man out of pounds 3,500 by pretending she had given birth to his son was yesterday given a suspended prison sentence by a judge at Chelmsford Crown Court.

Margaret Judges used a friend's baby girl to fool Philip Phillips, 46, a maths lecturer, for four years. She was sentenced to 18 months' jail, suspended for two years. The Recorder, William Clegg, told her that she had been 'wicked'.

Judges, a taxi firm controller, from Maldon, Essex, had denied obtaining money by deception between 1987 and 1991. During an earlier three-day trial, the jury heard that she tricked Mr Phillips, of Camden Town, north London, after meeting him through a dating agency. She collected cash and toys from the 'father' over more than four years after announcing her pregnancy at the age of 55.

She told Mr Phillips that the baby was a boy and agreed to name him after him. But the child he saw four times was a neighbour's girl dressed in boys' clothes.