Scout leader stole nearly £8,000 children had raised for trip to Switzerland to feed gambling habit

A scout leader stole nearly £8,000 from children for a summer camp trip to Switzerland to feed his gambling habit.

Youngsters from the 1st Bayston Hill Scouts had painstakingly raised cash for a jamboree in Bern, but leader Colin Llewellyn siphoned off cash to bet online and lost almost all of it.

Just over £500 was left in the kitty by the time he owned up to his criminal wrongdoing.

Shrewsbury Crown Court heard that the offending of Llewellyn, a scout leader for 27 years, first came to light in October last year when he messaged an official he knew from the Scout Association on Facebook, saying he needed to talk about something.

Llewellyn, 56, admitted what he had done and the police were called.

Bank statements showed that Llewellyn had been using scout money for bets for around 12 months, and sometimes he reimbursed the coffers when he had a win.

But his gambling got out of control and he couldn’t make the money back for the trip.

Rob Edwards, prosecuting, said the Scout Association official to whom Llewellyn confessed described his actions as “a huge breach in trust”.

Llewellyn, of Sidney Butts Close, Dorrington, near Shrewsbury, admitted one count of theft.

Adrian Roberts, defending, pointed out that due to Covid-19 the trip would not have gone ahead anyway, and asked for him to be kept out of prison so he could carry on with his day job of cleaning and restocking ambulances.

Llewellyn was given a 10-month prison sentence, suspended for two years. He was also ordered to carry out 150 hours unpaid work.

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