Former Royal Academy of Music director jailed for £230,000 fraud
30 May 2012
Royal Academy of Music: former finance director jailed
Janet Whitehouse, the former director of finance at the Royal Academy of Music who earlier this month pleaded guilty to charges of having defrauded the RAM of more than £230,000, was today sentenced to 20 months’ imprisonment at Southwark Crown Court.
Whitehouse resigned from the RAM in March 2011 after members of Academy staff became suspicious of invoices submitted by Stephen Newell, then head of information at the institution. Newell is yet to face trial over related charges, but the invoices he submitted were to be paid to Whitely Associates – a company of which Janet Whitehouse was a director – for work which a Crown Prosecution Service spokesman said ‘was entirely invented’.
Whitehouse also fabricated paperwork in the name of the Academy’s former principal, Curtis Price, purporting to authorise increases to her pension fund totalling £100,000, and secured rent-free accommodation from the RAM on behalf of her son, which was valued ‘in excess of £30,000’.
She repaid a total of £319,465.05 following her resignation.
Andrew Penhale, deputy head of the CPS Central Fraud Group, said the CPS was ‘pleased to have brought the case to a swift conclusion’.
At court proceedings on 2 May, Stephen Newell gave no indication of a plea and his next court appearance is due to take place on 13 June.