Page last updated at 18:21 GMT, Monday, 7 September 2009 19:21 UK

Rugby agent jailed for money scam

Russell Morgan
Russell Morgan twice failed to declare that he was a bankrupt

A former sporting agent with a "liking for the fine life" has been jailed for a finance scam totalling £481,000.

Russell Morgan, 41, of Hengoed, Caerphilly county, admitted obtaining money while an undischarged bankrupt.

Cardiff Crown Court heard Morgan, who counted Wales and Dragons rugby star Matthew Watkins among his clientele, hid his bankruptcy when borrowing cash.

He lied on court documents the second time he was declared bankrupt, the jury heard. He was jailed for 16 months.

The court was told that Morgan did not tell his neighbour, a manager with an HSBC branch, that he was an undischarged bankrupt when he tricked him into providing a line of credit worth more than £200,000.

Richard Cole, prosecuting, said: "When filling in forms he omitted his middle name, he changed the year he was born and said he was a home owner when he was only renting."

Morgan was eventually declared bankrupt but then lied on court documents, the jury was told.

'Sports cars'

Mr Cole said: "Again, he gave just his first name, not his correct date of birth and he ticked 'no' when he was asked if he'd been declared bankrupt."

Morgan admitted 11 charges of obtaining money while an undischarged bankrupt and two of making a false statement.

Matthew Roberts, defending, said his client was working as an investment consultant for a company in Dubai and was "someone with a wide range of business contacts".

He said his client was "attractive to the banks".

Costs and compensation

Judge Patrick Curran QC said Morgan had a £56,000 overdraft and arranged finance agreements for sports cars costing more than £120,000.

Judge Curran said: "This was not just business dealing but a liking for the fine life.

"You owed £208,000 to HSBC and with interest that sum ends up at £481,000."

A hearing later in the year will determine how much Morgan will repay in costs and compensation.



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