Shrivenham Army chief is found guilty of frauds

Swindon Advertiser: Former officer Robert Jolleys at Swindon Crown Court Former officer Robert Jolleys at Swindon Crown Court

Senior Army officer Lieutenant Colonel Robert Henry Jolleys is facing jail after being convicted of defrauding taxpayers of nearly £200,000 to educate his children at a top private school.

Jolleys, 52, who was stationed at the Defence Academy in Shrivenham, claimed the cash to send his three sons to the exclusive Roman Catholic Stonyhurst College in Lancashire.

After a day’s deliberations, a jury at Swindon Crown Court convicted Jolleys of three charges of obtaining a money transfer by deception, three charges of fraud and one charge of forgery.

Jolleys, of Woodlands Park in Whalley, Clitheroe, Lancashire, had denied all 11 counts. Sentencing was adjourned until March and Jolleys was released on conditional bail.

It was alleged that the father of three, who has since left the Army, claimed £218,094.11 in continuing education allowance between January 2002 and December 2009.

However, the jury convicted him of offences dated between April 2004 and December 2009.

The continuing education allowance allows service personnel to send their children to boarding school and prevents any disruption to their schooling.

The court has heard that Jolleys, who is known as Henry, was legitimately claiming the allowance after he separated from his wife.

He is accused of not informing his superiors of the split, creating a change in his circumstances and meaning he may have no longer received the allowance.

Under cross-examination Jolleys accepted he knew the “broad rules” around claiming the allowance but maintained he and his now ex-wife had not separated when he was posted from London to North Yorkshire in 2002.

Jolleys will now be subject to the Proceeds of Crime Act.

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