Lumley Castle conman guest jailed for £2,000 luxury hotel fraud

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A CONMAN who checked-out without paying for nights in luxury hotels has been put behind bars.

Mark Leslie treated himself and his guests to a £625 stay at Lumley Castle then ran up a £1,459 bill at Close House Hotel in Northumberland last summer.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the 28-year-old claimed after his arrest he was simply withholding payment due to rows about their service.

During the crime spree, Leslie used forged documents to apply for a £2,000 loan and accepted a £400 payment for a hot tub he advertised for sale on eBay but did not dispatch.

Mr Recorder Tim Kerr QC sentenced Leslie, who was on a suspended sentence for another fraud at the time, to 12 months in custody.

Leslie, of Alnwick Terrace, Wideopen, admitted making off without payment from Lumley Castle as well as fraud and forgery in relation to the loan, and fraud in relation to the eBay scam.

He was found guilty of making off without payment from the Close House Hotel.

Peter Schofield, defending, said Leslie has a wife and three children and his finances had been under pressure, adding he was now working as a volunteer.