Bradwell Screen East man in �36,000 theft

A DISGRACED former finance manager of Screen East has been ordered to pay back more than �36,000 of money he stole after raising money from the sale of his family home.

Melvyn Welton, 62, formerly of Jasmine Gardens, Bradwell, stole more than �60,000 from Screen East, the regional screen agency aimed at promoting film, media and culture in the region, to try to cope with his mounting personal debt problems, Norwich Crown Court heard.

At an earlier hearing Welton was jailed for two years after he admitted five counts of theft from Screen East, between 2006 and 2010 and asked for 45 similar offences to be taken into consideration.

Screen East itself no longer exists as it was wound up as a result in a change in government policies.

On Friday, Welton was back in court for a confiscation hearing to get back some of the money he stole.

Jonathan Morgans, for Welton, said the sale of the family home was going through and his share of the sale would raise �36,861.

He was given six months in which to repay the cash or he will face a further 16 months in prison.

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Welton, who earned �30,000 in his job with Screen East, was one of 12 members of staff and was said to have a “high level of responsibility” including looking after staff wages and the financial management of the company.

However an audit discovered �11,000 was missing, and when questioned Welton admitted the thefts and told police it was much more and was eventually found to total more than �62,000

Welton had already paid some of the cash back by taking a cut in his salary and now with the sale of his home he will repay a further lump sum back.