Accused fraudster missing

| 10/09/2012

courts good_0.jpg(CNS): A 53-year-old man who is due to stand trial later this month for fraud and theft failed to answer his bail on Friday morning in the Grand Court. Arthur Screaton was scheduled to appear in order to elect whether he wanted to be tried by a judge or a jury in the case against him, in which he is accused of stealing money from a George Town bar and restaurant. However, his attorney, John Furniss, told the court that his client did not appear to be present and noted that some time ago his bail conditions had been varied to allow him to travel. Crown counsel asked acting Justice Beswick for a warrant for Screaton owing to the non-appearance but asked not to vacate the trial date just in case.

Prosecutor Michael Snape asked for the case to mentioned next week in case Screaton was discovered or turned up of his own accord. With the case narrowed down to just one witness, he said the trial could still go ahead, and given the backlog of cases, Snape believed it was better to press on and be prepared to deal with the case.

Screaton, who was formerly employed by at Rackham’s pub and restaurant, is charged with two counts of theft and two of false accounting. The crown alleges that during 2010, while working at the harbour front restaurant, he falsified accounts by stating that in two particular months the bar's takings were less than they really were.

On the first occasion he accounted for $34,000 instead of the true amount of CI$39,000, and on the second CI$46,000 rather than actual takings of CI$53,000, and pocketed the difference. The crown claims that between 1 October and 31 December 2010, Screaton stole more than CI$10,000 from the business.

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Category: Crime

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