Thief accused of faking cancer to avoid being sentenced

Mark Holmes faked letters from his GP, saying he was having cancer treatment.
Mark Holmes faked letters from his GP, saying he was having cancer treatment.

A South Tyneside man accused of lying about receiving cancer treatment in a bid to dodge sentencing at court has appeared in the dock.

Mark Holmes is said to have faked letters from his GP which falsely stated he was undergoing treatment for testicular cancer in an effort to avoid sentencing at crown court over two counts of theft, three fraud charges and a further offence of false accounting.

The case will be sent to Newcastle Crown Court

Robert McDonald

He has already entered guilty pleas to those charges.

The 32-year-old appeared before South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court yesterday charged with intent to pervert the course of justice.

He is accused of falsifying four medical letters between October 1 of last year and July 14 of this year.

The letters are alleged to have been submitted to court officials in support of a number of applications to have sentencing hearings adjourned as he was not well enough to attend.

Holmes, of Prince Consort Road, Hebburn, entered no pleas during a brief hearing.

He was asked only to confirm his name, address and date of birth.

Magistrates were told that the charge was so serious it could only be dealt with at the crown court.

Justin Gibson, prosecuting, said: “He has other matters which are linked with this charge which are to be heard at Newcastle Crown Court on October 15.

“This case should therefore be adjourned to October 15.”

David Hatfield, defending, agreed that the matter should be sent to the crown court to tie in with matters already on file at the court.

Robert McDonald, chair of the magistrates, said: “The case will be sent to Newcastle Crown Court for a hearing on October 15.”

Holmes was granted unconditional bail until then.