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Police officer cleared over fraud claims

A police officer has been cleared over allegations he orchestrated a fake campaign of intimidation against himself so the authorities would buy his £380,000 home.

Constable Keith Davidson applied for his home to be bought under the special purchase of evacuated dwellings (SPED) scheme, his trial had been told.

The SPED scheme allows the authorities to buy homes of people who have been intimidated.

The prosecution said that he had applied to the scheme within weeks of refusing an offer of £370,000 for his Bangor home.

Last week he was found not guilty by a jury on both charges he faced.

Mr Davidson had claimed he was the subjects of threats, that his home and car had been vandalised and covered in graffiti and that his car had been stolen.

However, prosecution lawyer David McDowell had told the court that at the time the 45-year-old officer applied he was in financial hardship, his marriage was breaking down and he was in debt.

Belfast Telegraph