South Wales Police officer speeding cheat faces jail

Sgt Anthony Rees-Thompson Image copyright Wales News Service
Image caption Sgt Anthony Rees-Thompson worked at South Wales Police headquarters in Bridgend

A South Wales Police officer faces a jail sentence after he tried to cheat his way out of a speeding ticket by changing car number plates.

Sgt Anthony Rees-Thompson, 40, of Abercrave, Powys, had denied perverting the course of justice but a jury took less than an hour to find him guilty.

The undercover officer was caught by a speed camera doing 35mph in a 30mph zone in Swansea.

Sentencing was adjourned at Cardiff Crown Court.

The jury had heard how Rees-Thompson, who had worked for South Wales Police for a decade, was on his way to buy tickets for an Ospreys rugby match when he was caught speeding in a car belonging to his stepfather.

The father-of-four challenged the fixed penalty notice and was asked to submit photographic proof that it was not the same vehicle.

'Deliberate deception'

But the court heard he sent in photographs of the silver Vauxhall Corsa with new plates customised with a blue GB sign and the Welsh flag, bought for £21 online.

He then wrote to the speed camera unit pretending to be his stepfather and saying there had been a technical error or another similar car was using the same registration number.

Prosecutor Meirion Davies said: "He chose to cheat the legal process with a deliberate deception."

The court was told the police officer worked in the covert operations management unit at South Wales Police headquarters in Bridgend and his car was filmed every day as he drove it into work.

The jury was shown pictures of the car with its old number plate before the speeding offence and the new one allegedly fitted by Rees-Thompson.

After the jury returned its unanimous verdict, Judge David Wynne Morgan adjourned sentencing.

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