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War hero’s mother tells of fraud shock

Anne Marlton-Thomas in front of a picture of her war hero son Loren and (below) his widow Nicola who was convicted of fraud.

Anne Marlton-Thomas in front of a picture of her war hero son Loren and (below) his widow Nicola who was convicted of fraud.

The mother of a soldier killed in Afghanistan today told how her son’s widow had “shamed” the family name by being convicted of fraud.

Anne Marlton-Thomas has spent the last four years coming to terms with the tragic death of her son, Cpl Loren Marlton-Thomas.

But she was stunned to discover his widow, Nicola Marlton-Thomas, has been given a three-month suspended jail sentence after admitting impersonating a dead pensioner as part of a £14,000 fraud.

After buying the late Eunice Lees’ home in Alder Grove, Lytham, Marlton-Thomas used letters from a bank to open online accounts.

Eventually, the Royal Bank of Scotland became suspicious about purchases made in the pensioner’s name and contacted police.

Now Anne Marlton-Thomas, whose home on Buckden Close, Anchorsholme, is full of photos and has tributes to her war hero son, distanced herself from her former daughter-in-law, saying she wants nothing more to do with her.

She said: “The first we knew of what she did was when we saw it in The Gazette – we were just shocked.

“Reading about my son again brought back all these memories.

“But Marlton-Thomas is a name that not many people have, except this family, and I feel like this has shamed the name.

“There is only myself and my surviving son, Chris, that have that name.

“Loren’s brother and I have no interest in the life and actions of Nicola Marlton-Thomas. We just want people to know we haven’t benefited from this.”

Anne Marlton-Thomas no longer has any contact with her son’s widow, except when they see each other on Armistice Day.

She added: “You never get over something like this but you do get on with life.

“We are getting through this and everything was going nicely. Then this happens.”

Cpl Marlton-Thomas, 28, was a member of the 33rd Engineers when he was killed on what would have been his last tour of duty in Afghanistan, in November 2009.

He was regarded as one of the best “bomb hunters” in the Army.

He was given a full military funeral in Lytham and on the day of his funeral his wife was awarded the Elizabeth Cross in his memory of his bravery.

Nicola Marlton-Thomas, 34, admitted fraud by taking the identity of another person.

She was sentenced to three months in prison, suspended for a year by Blackpool magistrates.

She was also ordered to do 150 hours unpaid work for the community.

Click here to read more on this story: ARMY WIDOW AVOIDS JAIL

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