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Guilty

Following the guilty plea of Phil Haslam a few weeeks ago a second man has admitted his part in a theft which left Chorley FC £70,000 out of pocket.

Club chairman Ken Wright welcomed the prosecutions – and called on the judge to jail the pair when they return to court for sentencing.

Club accountant Haslam, 26, has previously 
admitted his involvement.

But yesterday his codefendant Ian Daniels pleaded guilty to three counts of counselling or procuring the theft of 
money totalling £69,156.66 from Chorley FC and Chorley Sporting Club at Preston Crown Court on the day he was due to stand trial.

Daniels, 25, also admitted counselling or procuring two burglaries of the Chorley FC offices in which a further £4,000 was stolen, acquiring criminal property totalling £50,321 and converting criminal property to the value of £14,000. Dressed in jeans and a casual zip-up jacket, Daniels, of Wymundley, Astley Village, Chorley, entered his pleas on the basis he only received £40,000 of the £70,000 stolen from the club.

He and Haslam, of Weldbank Lane, Chorley, will now return to court on April 19 where they will be sentenced for the offences. Ken Wright, chairman of Chorley FC, said: “A lot of people who are involved in the club, both officials and supporters have been waiting for the outcome of this trial, because the club means a lot to these people.

“The two people involved in this must have their comeuppance.

“We haven’t got that result today but on April 19 I am led to believe they will both be sentenced and hopefully justice will be done.

“For a club of our means £70,000 is a considerable amount of money. We are still in recovery from this.

“We are still managing to keep our heads above water but we have only been able to do that with the ongoing support of local business directors and supporters who have pulled together to enable the club to still compete at the level that we are at. Philip Haslam was in a position of trust at the football club and I would never, ever have considered that something like this would happen.

“I don’t know Daniels – this is the first time I have seen him. If they both get a custodial sentence I will be delighted, along with a lot of other people who are involved in the club.

“It is fair to say there is a lot of ill feeling.”

Judge Andrew Woolman warned Daniels: “You must understand all sentencing options are open and that certainly includes custody.”

Note: It was the webmaster descision not to publish any news on the trials until after both trials were complete.

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