A bogus charity trustee was sentenced today at Bristol Magistrates Court to a community punishment order of 160 hours work in the community.
Richard Culverhouse of Bristol was convicted of both
acting as a trustee while disqualified and for lying to the Charity Commission.
The Commission investigated the charity Wessex Welfare Bureau after Culverhouse had set himself up as a founding trustee in 2000. After an examination of the charity’s registration documents, it became clear to Commission investigators that Culverhouse had lied about his eligibility for trusteeship. Eevidence came to light that he was acting as a trustee despite an unspent criminal record.
Acting as a charity trustee with an unspent conviction for dishonesty or theft and lying to the Charity Commission are both illegal under the Charities Act 1993.
In passing sentence, Chair of the Magistrates, Mrs Janet Willis, said to Culverhouse: “By your actions you caused others unwittingly to put you in a position of trust.”
Charity Commission Head of investigations in Taunton, Steve Grenfell, said: “There are over one million unpaid trustees in this country doing vital work in the community and charities simply couldn’t operate without them. It’s the importance of the role that makes honesty and a clean record so vital.
“We welcome today’s sentence as a warning to anyone who would consider abusing the unique position of trust and goodwill that charities hold in our society.”
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