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Addict claimed he had cancer to con friend
A DRUG addict told a friend that track marks on his arms were from cancer treatment to con him out of treasured gold rings.
Mark Weaver, 42 told friend of 30 years David Robertson that he was dying of cancer and only had 12 months to live.
A judge was told he showed him track marks on his arm from repeated heroin, saying they were symptoms of his illness.
He first asked for £20 to travel to hospital in London.
Then, on September 24, he arrived in the middle of the night, saying he needed to use the bathroom. When Mr Robertson’s back was turned he took three gold rings worth £450, one of which had great sentimental value to its owner.
Weaver pleaded guilty to four counts of theft and two counts of fraud, all involving people described as “extremely vulnerable” at Oxford Crown Court on Friday.
The High Furlong, Banbury, resident preyed on those he knew well or had met recently and won their trust by telling lies, a judge heard.
Weaver also convinced 78-year-old Pamela Timberlake, who he had recently met, to pay him £175 to paint her house and fix her TV.
Weaver marched her to a cashpoint on October 22 and got her to hand over the money but never even started the work.
He called on acquaintance Roy Burrow at home on August 18 and told him he needed to borrow his BlackBerry mobile phone, which he then stole.
Trevor Lampitt was also convinced to hand over £21 on September 22 and Andrew Johnston’s BlackBerry was taken from his house on August 12.
Defending Weaver, Graham Bennett said his client had been in the grip of a heroin addiction since the end of 2011.
He said: “These were all people who were known to the defendant in one way or another, as acquaintances or as friends.
“The way the theft took place shows a breach of trust between the defendant and the victim.
“Mr Weaver looking back hangs his head in shame at what he did by breaching trust between the two parties.”
Judge Tomas Corrie sentenced him to nine months jail, suspended for 12 months, each count to run concurrently.
He also imposed a 12-month supervision requirement and six-month drug rehabilitation course.
He said: “Although the amounts of money were not large, the impact on the victims has been very significant and distressing.
“All of them were known to you and known to you to be vulnerable.
“It is a horrid catalogue of shabby betrayal of people who knew and trusted you, but you exploited.”