Woman admits stealing £100k from community’s youth football club

A mum pinched £100,000 from a football club's purse while working as a director, she admits.

Michelle Marshall, 41, pleaded guilty at Liverpool Crown Court to stealing huge sums of money from the Phoenix Football Youth Club in Southport, Merseyside.

Michelle's husband Simon Marshall, denied on Monday one charge of fraud put to the couple and will face a trial in January next year, the ECHO reports.

The couple appeared side-by-side in the dock for their plea hearing, in which Michelle pleaded guilty to two counts of fraud by abuse of her position as a director.

On the first charge she admitted fraud between January 8, 2017 and November 8, 2019, in which she transferred £70,185.60 of a grant awarded to the club from its account to spend on herself.

On the second charge Michelle and Simon Marshall were both accused of fraudulently taking £41,619.41 from the club, which Michelle Marshall admitted and Simon Marshall denied.

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Kevin Slack, prosecuting, explained a trial, estimated to last up to five days, would need to be fixed for Mr Marshall.

Rebecca Smith, defending Michelle Marshall, explained there would be a "basis of plea", meaning the full facts of the prosecution case are not accepted, but no further detail of which facts are contested was given in open court.

Ms Smith asked the judge to consider sentencing Michelle Marshall ahead of her husband's trial, explaining they have three young children and she "wishes to know her fate as soon as possible".

Judge David Potter told Simon Marshall he will face a trial on January 31, 2022 while a pre sentence report will be prepared ahead of Michelle Marshall's hearing.

Michelle and Simon Marshall, both of Shaws Road, Birkdale, were released on unconditional bail.

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