The former finance director of the Priory Federation of Academies Stephen Davies has denied he did anything wrong regarding payments made to the organisation’s chief executive.
Davies, giving evidence to the jury at Lincoln Crown Court on Friday, January 8, said that he could not be remorseful for his actions because he had nothing to be remorseful for.
He said that there were “sound business reasons” for the federation paying for training courses for the chief exec’s son Kia Richardson, despite the fact that he was not employed by the organisation at the time.
And he said that overtime payments of more than £4,000 paid out to Richardson for overtime payments were justified.
Davies said that it made financial sense for the federation to pay over £1,000 for Richardson to attend an equine training course at Writtle College, Chelmsford, as it was known at the time he was going to be employed by the federation working with horses.
Davies said that at the time Richardson attended the course he was not employed by the federation, which meant that the organisation was not in the position of paying him wages when he was attending the course rather than working.
When it was suggested to him that the payment had been made for the benefit of Kia Richardson, the son of the chief exec Richard Gilliland, rather than the federation Davies responded: “It was for sound business reasons. Lots of decisions were made for sound business reasons that weren’t to do with Mr Gilliland’s son.
“Mr Gilliland told me that this course would help Kia Richardson in his job. That was good enough for me.
“I knew that Mr Richardson was going to be employed by us and I was told that this qualification would help him do his job.”
Davies said Gilliland could be “very vindictive”.
He added: “He could be very angry. He could be unreasonable. On the other hand he could be extremely compassionate and caring.”
Davies said that although he told police during his interview he had been bullied into his actions his evidence to the jury was that there was nothing criminal in his behaviour as regards the three charges he faces and the decisions were sound business sense.
He denied a suggestion that he changed invoices to hide the fact that payments were being made towards training for Kia Richardson.
Davies said: “There are no excuses for falsifying invoices but I didn’t do it. This is absolute nonsense.”
Richard Gilliland, 64, who now lives in Spain, denies seven charges of fraud by abuse of position on dates between October 2008 and November 2011.
Stephen Davies, 58, of Abingdon Avenue, Lincoln, denies three charges of fraud by abuse of position.
The trial continues.
Due to the judge’s ruling on Friday, November 13, 2015, any comments on the ongoing trial on The Lincolnite will be removed.
Follow the progress of the trial so far:
- Ex-Lincoln academy boss employed son who failed CRB check, fraud trial hears
- Lincoln academy paid £2,480 bill for CEO’s son to attend training course, court hears
- Fraud trial: Lincoln academy’s financial management described as “chaotic”
- ‘Forceful’ ex-Lincoln academy boss rarely backed up expenses with receipts, court hears
- Boss’ son who failed CRB check not interviewed for job at Lincoln academy, trial hears
- Lincoln academy invoice was tampered with, court hears from employee
- Employee tells jury ex-Lincoln federation boss was “drained” by problems with son
- Ex-Lincoln academy boss’ son left trust in “turmoil”, jury told
- Solicitor ‘had no knowledge’ of ex-Lincoln academy CEO’s employment conditions, jury hears
- Ex-Lincoln academy boss provided alternative curriculum for disruptive pupils
- Gilliland fraud trial: No overtime payments were authorised to son
- Ex-Lincoln academy boss considered retirement before he resigned, court hears
- Ex-Lincoln academies boss described as ‘admirable’ as fraud trial resumes
- Federation chairman denies conspiracy to make Gilliland a scapegoat, fraud trial hears
- Lincoln trust sought legal advice after national paper investigated employment of boss’ son
- Ex-Lincoln academy boss in ‘terrible mental state’ prior to fraud probe, court hears
- “I was bullied into it”, says former Lincoln academies’ finance director in fraud trial
- ‘Not a jot of truth’ in fraud allegations, says ex-Lincoln academies boss in defence
- Fraud allegations are “incomprehensible”, says accused ex-Lincoln academies boss
- “I always put the children first,” claims ex-Lincoln academies boss accused of fraud
- Former Lincoln academies boss denies bullying as fraud trial continues
- Ex-Lincoln academies boss defends decision to employ son convicted of flashing
- “It’s total nonsense”, says ex-Lincoln academies boss accused of fraud
- Ex-Lincoln academies finance director had no accountancy qualifications, court hears