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Last Updated: Friday, 11 February, 2005, 12:41 GMT
Club directors face fraud charges
John Russell and Mike Lewis
John Russell and Mike Lewis: Fraud allegations at club
The former chairman and vice chairman of Exeter City Football Club have appeared in court on fraud charges.

John Russell, 48, from Brighouse, West Yorkshire and 63-year-old Mike Lewis, from Swansea are accused of conspiracy to defraud.

Other charges include obtaining pecuniary advantage by deception and carrying on a business intending to defraud creditors in 2002 and 2003.

They will next appear at Exeter Crown Court next week.

Mr Russell's wife, Gillian, pleaded not guilty to two charges brought before Exeter magistrates on Friday, one of false accounting, the other of stealing 20,000 pounds in cash. Her case was adjourned.

The trio were arrested by fraud squad officers in May 2003 when Exeter City was 5m in debt.

It followed a 20-month long police investigation into the club's finances.

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