Belfast Telegraph

Fundraiser accused of stealing money she collected for injured soldiers

By Chris Kilpatrick

A charity fundraiser has appeared in court charged with stealing money she had collected for badly injured soldiers.

Deborah Campbell is accused of taking funds from the Help for Heroes charity – a body which Princes William and Harry have publicly backed.

The 33-year-old from Redthorn Court, Coleraine, faces six charges of theft and one of false representation.

She is charged with stealing merchandise worth £202.50 from the charity some time between April 2012 and July 2013.

Campbell is also accused of placing Help for Heroes collection boxes in a shop in Coleraine with the intention of keeping the money donated.

The five remaining charges relate to the alleged theft of money from collection boxes owned by the charity.

Campbell denies the allegations against her.

The case was due to be contested at North Antrim Magistrates Court in Coleraine yesterday but was adjourned until a later date.

The court was told a prosecution witness had sought to withdraw his evidence, but the request was rejected.

Among those due to give evidence is a representative of Help for Heroes who travelled from England for the case.

She agreed to return to the province on the next date.

Help for Heroes (above) was launched in 2007 to help provide better facilities for British servicemen and women wounded since September 11, 2001. It has attracted a number of high-profile trustees and patrons and has the support of the Army Benevolent Fund and the Ministry of Defence.

It has raised in excess of £120m, which is used for individual support and the building of special recovery centres.

On its website, the charity – which goes by the abbreviation H4H, states: "Everyone at H4H is passionate about helping our heroes, most of us have links to the services; some have partners, friends or relatives who've been injured or have lost a loved one.

"We take the time to listen and understand what's needed and do our very best for our heroes every single day.

"We have a complete open door policy and welcome all of our supporters to visit us or pick up the phone to find out just what a difference your donations are making to the lives of our heroes."

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