Singer sent to jail for deception

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The Independent Online
A SINGER was jailed yesterday for attempting to cheat the Swedish furniture company Ikea out of pounds 54,000.

Alton Edwards, 38, who had a hit in the early 1980s with 'I Just Wanna (Spend Some Time With You)', committed the crime after losing his recording contract and falling into debt, the Old Bailey was told.

He delivered a request to a bank for pounds 54,000 using a genuine Ikea letterhead. The letter asked for the money to be transferred to an account Edwards controlled and was processed without question.

Stephen Clayton, for the prosecution, said he was caught when a motorcycle courier he hired to collect the money became suspicious and alerted bank staff.

Edwards planned to use the money to pay off mortgage arrears on his home in Cricklewood, north-west London.

The Recorder, Vivian Robinson, said because of the premeditated nature of the crime he had to impose a prison sentence.

He jailed Edwards, who admitted forgery, handling stolen goods and attempting to obtain property by deception, for a total of 18 months. He faces deportation to Zimbabwe after his sentence.