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Aberystwyth: ‘Money troubles’ caused law student carried out frauds

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Swansea Crown Court

Swansea Crown Court

A FORMER Aberystwyth law student who carried out a series of frauds after getting into debt has today received a suspended prison sentence.

Caroline Murichu, who cheated colleagues working at the university’s Varsity pub and a customer,was told it would be better to keep her out of jail and working so she could repay the stolen money.

Murichu, aged 22, who now lives with her parents in Sussex, admitted six offences of fraud and two of theft.

Ian Ibrahim, prosecuting, told Swansea crown court that she used several different methods to defraud her victims.

She told a friend, Michael Bates, that she had trouble with her bank card and asked if she could transfer £350 into his account and withdraw it in cash.

After he had given Murichu the money he discovered it had come from Quick Quid, a payday loan firm, and that Quick Quid were now taking regular repayments from his account.

Leanne Taylor, aged 23, found that Wonga had transferred £400 into her account. After investigations were made she found that there had been three other attempts to obtain loans in her name.

One of them provided police with an ex-mail address that led to Murichu. After her arrest she was searched and found to have a bank card in the name of Sophie Parr, who had visited the Varsity and paid by card.

Megan Wiggins, who worked at the pub, agreed to go on a holiday organised by Murichu, who promptly overcharged her by £152.

Another bar worker, Ruth Kitchen, discovered that two payments had been made from her account to Holiday Hypermarket just days before Murichu had jetted off to Greece.

Murichu’s barrister, Angela Ricciardi, said she had owed £26,000 in student loans as well as other debts.

Murichu now made £1,300 a month working in an insurance company’s call centre and could repay the stolen money, which totalled £878.

The judge, Mr Recorder Petts, said Murichu had tricked friends and colleagues and had now brought shame on herself and her family.

Murichu, now of 34 Cherry Lane, Crawley, west Sussex, was jailed for 24 weeks, suspended for 18 months, and ordered to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work for the community.

She was also ordered to complete 10 sessions of a thinking skills course and to repay in full the £878 at the rate of £250 a month.

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New Quay RNLI lifeboat crew trains with lifeguards

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NEW QUAY lifeboat station hosted a special training evening with the lifeboat crew and Ceredigion’s RNLI lifeguards last week.

Pete Yates, one of New Quay RNLI’s inshore lifeboat helms, worked closely with Ceredigion lifeguard supervisor, Tirion Dowsett, to plan scenarios for the teams to practice working together in casualty care situations.

A large scale scenario included four casualties to be dealt with by the inshore lifeboat crew and two lifeguard teams on a nearby beach, whilst a third lifeguard team and lifeboat crew members dealt with a separate scenario at the lifeboat station.

Pete said: “It was a great evening of training. We had 9 lifeguards and 13 lifeboat crew in attendance.

“The main scenario included casualties suffering from hypothermia and propeller injuries. A second scenario involved a mechanic suffering head injuries in the forepeak of the all-weather lifeboat and requiring extraction on a stretcher.

“On completion of these scenarios we all gathered back at the station where one of our senior crew members sprung a great act at being a diabetic having a hypo, and being suitably angry and aggressive.”

Roger Couch, New Quay RNLI’s Lifeboat Operations Manager, added: “It was great for our lifeboat crew members to work with the lifeguards as it builds a deeper understanding of each other’s roles and encourages teamwork between us. This is of great benefit when dealing with real life casualty care situations.”

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Coastguard rescues dog stuck on cliffs

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LAST TUESDAY (Aug 27), New Quay RNLI’s inshore D-class lifeboat, Audrey LJ, was tasked by Milford Haven Coastguard to assist the Coastguard with a dog stuck on the cliffs near New Quay.

The volunteer crew launched the inshore lifeboat at 1.50pm with four crew members on board and made their way south down the coast.

Brett Stones, New Quay RNLI’s helm said: “We located the dog on the cliffs by Castell Bach, near Cwmtydu. We stood by while the Coastguard team caught the animal. The dog was unharmed and safe with the Coastguard so we were stood down.

“However, while returning to station we were then tasked to a small vessel with engine failure. We towed the stricken boat with three people on board back to New Quay. We rehoused the inshore lifeboat and it was ready for service by 2.40pm.”

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New maintenance Lorries cut carbon emissions

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The Ground Maintenance Team has purchased three new lorries to support ground maintenance services in Ceredigion.

The new lorries will move Ceredigion County Council’s Ground Maintenance Service’s equipment to and from the grounds that they look after. The lorries will also take cut grass away for composting. This provides the most efficient way of maintaining the areas that the team is responsible for.

Councillor Dafydd Edwards is the Cabinet member responsible for Highways and Environmental Services together with Housing. He said: “The new vehicles replace ones which had provided excellent service for almost 20 years. They are fitted with Euro 6 engines which are considerably more efficient and better for the environment.”

The Grounds Maintenance Team is also incrementally introducing electric-powered mowers, blowers, hedge cutters and strimmers into its fleet. This equipment is better for the environment, is easier to use and causes less noise and vibration.

The new lorries support Ceredigion County Council’s commitment to be a net-zero carbon council by 2030.

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