A desperate addict gained a 75-year-old’s trust then conned him out of £100 with a flimsy story about buying him a mattress.
Duncan Marshall (43) became acquainted with the man, who has problems with his mental health, and asked if there was any work he could do for him.
In the end the man gave him money so he would go and buy a mattress for him.
The victim’s brother-in-law stepped in and confronted Marshall when the mattress failed to materialise and the addict tried to give him some money so he would not report the matter to police.
Appearing from custody at Falkirk Sheriff Court last Thursday for sentencing, Marshall had previously pled guilty to gaining £100 from the elderly gentleman through fraud between October 31 and November 4 last year.
Procurator fiscal depute Siobhan Monks said: “This involves a 75-year-old man who has some mental health issues. The accused became friendly with him and offered to carry out some work for him.
“The man eventually gave the accused £100 so he could go and buy a mattress for him.”
Marshall’s vulnerable victim waited in vain for him to return with the mattress.
He eventually got his brother-in-law involved in the matter and he went to confront Marshall about the mattress.
The procurator fiscal dispute said: “The victim’s brother-in-law approached the accused and asked him about the money he had been given.
“The accused took some money out his pocket and offered to give it to the brother-in-law if the police did not become involved in the matter.
“When the brother-in-law refused the accused ran off.”
Marshall, 138 Ure Crescent, Bonnybridge, was later traced by police.
Defending Marshall, solicitor Simon Hutchison said his client had a long standing problem with drink and drugs.
Sheriff John Mundy took all matters into account, including the breach of trust, and sentenced Marshall to 14 months in prison back dated to April 7.