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Private school secretary admits fraud

PUBLISHED: 10:20 23 November 2009 | UPDATED: 16:33 07 September 2010

A WOMAN who pleaded guilty to defrauding a youngster s football league of thousands of pounds is working at a private Hampstead school, the Ham&High has discovered. Delina Connor, 41, was convicted this month of committing fraud while working as treasurer

A WOMAN who pleaded guilty to defrauding a youngster's football league of thousands of pounds is working at a private Hampstead school, the Ham&High has discovered.

Delina Connor, 41, was convicted this month of committing fraud while working as treasurer of the Camden and Islington Youth Football League.

Between August last year and June this year, Ms Connor of Kingsdown Road, Archway, made a total of 45 cheques out to herself from the league's bank account totalling £21,742.

She is, however, still in her job as an administrator at the general office of University College School, Frognal, where she has been employed for the last six years.

Before being contacted by the Ham&High this week, the school was unaware of her conviction but said she had shown good character throughout her career.

Jeremy Witts, the director of finance and administration at UCS, said in a statement: "Delina Connor has been employed for over six years and in that time she has become a very popular and much-loved member of staff and in all her dealings with the school she has been totally professional and impeccably honest."

Mr Witts said he could not comment on whether she would remain employed at the school.

The volunteer-run football league, which organises competitions for thousands of under-16s, was left in a precarious situation - not being able to pay the rent on the Islington pitches where it is based.

The league is run by raising money through the contributions made by each of more than 100 teams from across the two boroughs, and does not receive any outside funding.

They were allowed to postpone payment until funds arrived from clubs at the start of the football season. Clubs were also asked to contribute more money but Lloyd's bank has since repaid most of the cash.

A league insider said: "She deserves everything she gets because of what she did and the way she went about it. It is the kid's money at the end of the day.

"Everyone who works there does it voluntarily and for the good of the game."

Ms Connor, who was charged with fraud and 'dishonestly abusing her position intending to make a gain', is to be sentenced at Blackfriars Crown Court at a later date. She is currently on unconditional bail.

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