Former solicitor admits stealing £350k from two charities after he was scammed

A former solicitor has admitted stealing about £350,000 from two charities after he fell foul of a scam. 

Hugh Lansdell, 71 and from Norwich, last week pleaded guilty at Norwich Magistrates’ Court to one count of fraud by abuse of position between August 2015 and July 2017. 

In November 2016, Lansdell, who was struck off as a solicitor after his crimes came to light, sold stocks worth £102,500 belonging to the Charity of Lillian Armitage, which supports women in the Norwich and Sheringham areas, and pocketed the proceeds. 

Then between June 2016 and June 2017, he stole assets worth £247,000 from the grant-making charity Poors and Ploughlet Trust and kept the money. 

Lansdell had fallen victim to scammers who had led him to believe he had won the lottery, but he needed to pay these 'promoters' thousands of pounds before he could access the non-existent winnings. 

He had stolen a further £1.5m from other private clients, according to reports. 

A statement from the trustees of the Poor and Ploughlet Trust said the stolen funds had been returned to the charity. 

The case will go to crown court for sentencing at a later date. 

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