Former Hammersmith Hospital Boss Must Pay Back Stolen Funds

Tomkins used NHS money on horses and horse semen

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The former Chief Executive of Hammersmith Hospital NHS Trust has been ordered to pay back all the funds she stole from the NHS - or face further time in prison.

Louise Tompkins, 48 is already serving a two year nine month prison sentence for fraudulently signing off NHS payments worth £200,000 to fund the upkeep of her thoroughbred horses.

An investigation by Hammersmith and Fulham Police payback unit into her assets has overseen the sale of horses from Tomkins' private stud farm to pay back some of the stolen money.

But on Monday April 12 at Southwark Crown Court, she was ordered to pay back a further £76,000 within six months, or face another 18 months in prison.

Tompkins, the daughter of the late Sir Edward Tomkins, a former British Ambassador to France, pleaded guilty in January last year to submitting invoices to the NHS between 2007 and 2008 to pay for importing horse semen and transporting thoroughbred horses to her farm, near Horsham in Sussex.

Tomkins was head of the trust, which has now become Imperial College NHS Trust, but left the NHS in 2008 to run the stud farm. The fraud was discovered when a successor found a number of "unusual invoices".

She was investigated by the Metropolitan Police and the NHS Counter Fraud Service, who then prosecuted her, saying Tomkins abused her position of trust as a general manager in the NHS to defraud the Health Service of over £200,000 and divert public funds to her private business.

Defending QC Neil Saunders told the court that Tompkins had managed to raise £109,545 of the £201,333 owing after selling 18 of the horses at auction, along with her Sussex house, car and Scottish Widow pension.

He said: "She is adamant she wants to pay all the money back as soon as possible as she feels morally responsible."

Detective Sergeant Richard Gilbert from the Payback Unit from Hammersmith & Fulham Police said: " Louise Tomkins has been ordered to pay back to the NHS a good part of money she stole from them.

"We will continue to keep an eye on her and should she come into money in the future, this matter can be re-visited."

 

April 13, 2011

 

 

 

 

Tompkins, of Faygate, West Sussex, nodded quietly from the dock as Judge Gledhill gave her a confiscation order.

She must return the full sum within six months or face a further 18 months in prison.



The court heard last year how Tompkins fabricated and manipulated receipts for items such as horse semen and the transport of thoroughbred horses from Europe to her farm, near Horsham, in West Sussex - passing them off as invoices for genuine payments to NHS suppliers.

Her 13-month crime spree was discovered when she moved jobs and her successor found a series of 'unusual invoices' for medical photography services.

Before she was jailed last year, the court heard she had carried out the scam amid stress caused by a work grievance, and a series of personal tragedies including a mix up over her late father's estate.


April 13, 2011