Soldier jailed for five years for selling comrades' medals

#1
Soldier jailed for five years for selling comrades' medals | UK news | guardian.co.uk

A soldier has been jailed for five years after stealing medals from his comrades and selling them on eBay.

Colour Sergeant Gordon Hill took medals belonging to eight soldiers who were on sick leave or operational duty and made almost £7,000 by posting them on the online auction site.

Victims described their sense of shock and betrayal that one of their own had stolen from them. One said that he now felt it hard to trust his fellow non-commissioned officers.

Jailing Hill today, Judge Douglas Field told him: "Your victims were no less than your fellow sergeants, who had every right to believe that they should be able to trust their colleagues. You have broken that trust in the most disgraceful way. Their medals had been awarded to them in recognition of meritorious service in the British army and particularly their campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"Each told of the emotional attachment of their medals. This is made more poignant by the fact that some of their comrades had died."

Swindon crown court heard that Hill, from Darlington, County Durham, stole the medals from rooms at Warminster garrison in Wiltshire between 2008 and 2010.

Hannah Squire, prosecuting, told the court that the medals had ended up as far away as New Zealand – as Hill made £6,936 from the sales.

Squires read impact statements from six of the victims, who have all had their medals returned or are in the process of getting them back.

Sergeant Andrew Turnbull said in his statement: "My medals represent personal blood spilt overseas." He described Hill's actions as a "complete betrayal of trust".

Sergeant Mark Wall, another victim, said: "The theft of my medal and the fact that another fellow senior non-commissioned officer breached my trust and friendship makes me feel sick. We are a very close unit, and trust each other implicitly. Theft on no matter what scale can destroy the trust in a unit."

Before he got his medals back, Sergeant Thomas Salter, a soldier for 20 years, said he would not attend any Remembrance Day parades because of his loss. He spoke of feeling "upset and degraded" and said each medal was a "poignant reminder of good and bad".

Sergeant Kevin Blackley, speaking about the loss of his Afghan medal – since returned – said: "This is the most important medal I have. We lost five from our battalion and three from our reconnaissance force. My Afghan medal serves as a chilling reminder of the price we pay for the freedom that we take for granted."

Sergeant David Taylor said: "I wear these medals with great pride, and they are a reminder of my life in the army. I now find it hard to trust any of my fellow NCOs."

Alex Daymond, defending, said that his client – who had spent 22 years in the army and served in Northern Ireland, Kosovo and Afghanistan – still maintained his innocence.

Hill, 38, who has twice been court martialled for stealing from comrades, was found guilty of eight counts of theft or burglary and 12 counts of fraud.

Judge Field expressed surprise that the married father was still in the army when he stole the medals, given his previous offences. The court heard that he was now in the process of being discharged from the army
 
#2
Is the criminal a sick man in need of help or just an oxygen thief ?

Given the pattern of offences I must go for the second option.
 
#6
"Hill, 38, who has twice been court martialled for stealing from comrades, was found guilty of eight counts of theft or burglary and 12 counts of fraud.

Judge Field expressed surprise that the married father was still in the army when he stole the medals, given his previous offences. The court heard that he was now in the process of being discharged from the army"

How the fcuk has he made SSGT with this record???? Hope he got a good kicking before being arrested.
 
#8
They have indeed. However, there are some countries, such as Switzerland, where you can break the 'chain' of title or true ownership and, therefore ignore any such claims !

Let's hope that doesn't actually happen !
 
#12
He's s cunt of the highest order but 5 years? The MPs who fleeced the tax payers for much more got a fraction of that as do benefit cheats and junkies who steal considerably more again and get community service? Not sticking up for him he deserves the nick. Just curious about the time given.
 

Alsacien

MIA
Moderator
#13
Warminster rag said he was posted in with 3 Yorks, but maybe his mess victims were a mixed bunch.

How TF did this guy remain a SNCO?

"The jury was also told Hill had been court martialled twice in the past for taking things from other soldiers.
In 1998 he stole a bank card from a friend’s room in barracks before using it, and in 2005 he took a junior ranking’s car. "
 
B

Biscuits_AB

Guest
#16
He's s cunt of the highest order but 5 years? The MPs who fleeced the tax payers for much more got a fraction of that as do benefit cheats and junkies who steal considerably more again and get community service? Not sticking up for him he deserves the nick. Just curious about the time given.
5 years is a good result. All comes down to integrity and how the Army views it. People on this site continually harp on (and literally bore me to death sometimes) about squaddies being the 'salt of the earth', which is utter bollox although the sentiment is understandable, given the traditions and reputations of the units which make up the Army. You can't compare this man's actions to that of MPs or any other part of society. The Army is better than they are and your conduct, whether you agree or not, must reflect this. His actions go far beyond the mere theft. 5 years is a good result, but I'll put a fiver on that he wins on appeal against sentence and gets it reduced.

Plus, he's from Darlo, so he is bound to be a wrong 'un. How he managed to stay in and attain the rank which he did with his previous is a question that should be explored, but he's not alone. There are many convicted thieves still serving. You may even know some of them. I know that I do.
 
#17
That's definitely a Lancs tie.

Cracking journalism from the Wilts paper.

"Sergeant Gordon Hill sneaked into officers’ bedrooms in the Sergeants’ Mess at Battlesbury Barracks, Warminster, to get his hands on the prized decorations."

Wrong rank, officers in the Sergeants' Mess, wrong regiment. Nice one.
 
#19
5 years is a good result. All comes down to integrity and how the Army views it. People on this site continually harp on (and literally bore me to death sometimes) about squaddies being the 'salt of the earth', which is utter bollox although the sentiment is understandable, given the traditions and reputations of the units which make up the Army. You can't compare this man's actions to that of MPs or any other part of society. The Army is better than they are and your conduct, whether you agree or not, must reflect this. His actions go far beyond the mere theft. 5 years is a good result, but I'll put a fiver on that he wins on appeal against sentence and gets it reduced.
Don't you support this man? He's a veteran for God sakes (or he will be as soon as the army boot him out).

He'll be a veteran in prison, outrage etc, the system failed him, more outrage etc lets hope the RBL or some other forces charity are ready to help the bloke once he has left prison.
 
B

Biscuits_AB

Guest
#20
Don't you support this man? He's a veteran for God sakes (or he will be as soon as the army boot him out).

He'll be a veteran in prison, outrage etc, the system failed him, more outrage etc lets hope the RBL or some other forces charity are ready to help bloke once he has left prison.
Fuck, I forgot...let's have a whip round for him!!!!!!! Sell your medals to get the money...or sell somebody else's!

PS. Wasn't there a TA CSgt on here a while back who 'borrowed' medals (which he wasn't entitled to wear as he'd never deployed) for a wedding...and 'lost' them?
 

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