Boss jailed for taking £1.3m from Swansea homeless charity

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BoatImage source, South Wales Police
Image caption,
A boat that Davies bought has been seized by South Wales Police

A boss who took £1.3m from a homeless charity to fund a lavish lifestyle has been jailed for five years.

Robert Mark Davies, 50, who worked for Swansea-based Cyrenians Cymru admitted fraud by abuse of position.

The charge related to a six year period between 4 June, 2008, and 11 November, 2014, when he forged invoices.

Cardiff Crown Court heard he spent £100,000 on boats, £26,000 on airfares and £80,000 staying at The Savoy, London.

The deception involved a total of £1,343,074 and since an investigation was launched into the lost money, it has been forced to declare itself insolvent.

It went into administration in February 2015 after 42 years helping the homeless and people living in poverty in west Wales, with 20 jobs affected.

Image source, Wales news service
Image caption,
Robert Davies used the money to buy boats, airfares and hotel stays

During a plea hearing in April, prosecutor Carl Harrison said the fraud was "a major factor in the charity ceasing to exist".

Det Sgt Stuart Prendiville of South Wales Police said he had "a lavish lifestyle" which included "extravagant holidays and the purchase of several boats".

He added: "This ultimately was a factor which led to the charity becoming insolvent and the tragic loss of a number of support services provided to the homeless and vulnerable people of Swansea."

The force is now investigating money gained by Davies.