Thursday, August 8, 2019

Met Police officer steals dead man's bank card when called to his home after sudden death

A Metropolitan Police officer stole a dead man's driving licence and bank card when called to the deceased's Maida Vale home after his sudden death, a court heard.

Oliver Levi Darby, 42, was on the uniformed response team in the northern part of Westminster Borough and was responsible for securing the deceased man's property.

Blackfriars Crown Court heard the items were found when fellow officers searched his room in the Gilmour Section House, Kennington Lane, Lambeth on January 11, last year.

Also found were three further bank cards belonging to two people who formerly resided at a Wimbledon rented home once occupied by Darby.

Darby from Burnham Market, King's Lynn, Norfolk has pleaded not guilty to dishonestly handling those three cards.

He has also pleaded not guilty to stealing the driving licence and bank card belonging to the estate of Gary Steel of Maida Vale on January 6, 2017.

Prosecutor Mr. Oliver Doherty told the jury: 'The reason why Mr Darby wanted these cards isn't entirely clear, but at the time he was having some financial difficulties.

'He had cause to tell other people he had financial difficulties, but it is not the prosecution case he ever used the cards even though one was used to pay a Cyprus-based internet dating site.'

During the search a Halifax Visa and MasterCard, still attached to the original letters, were found in a shoe box and a Barclays Visa card was found on a shelf.

The late Mr Steel's Barclaycard and licence was found in a red bag by Darby's bed.

He was one of two officers who attended the deceased man's home where property was officially listed. 'There was no recording of the licence or bank card later found,' explained Mr Doherty.

'Darby does not dispute the items were in his room, but does deny dishonest possession.'

The trial continues.