Sunderland mother stole £455,000 from will of soldier son killed in Afghanistan and spent it on 'extravagant' lifestyle
A mother who led an "extravagant" lifestyle and spent almost half a million pounds which was left in her soldier son's will for someone else has been jailed.
Kathryn Walker, 56, was entrusted as the estate executor after her son Richard died while on duty in Afghanistan.
But instead of looking after the money, Newcastle Crown Court heard that she spent it on a caravans, private number plates, and horseboxes.
The court heard after a third party became suspicious about her being "well off" they hired a private investigator and the police became involved.
By then, all of the money had disappeared and the total swindled amounted to £455,774.72.
Walker, of Horsley Road, Barmston, Washington, initially denied any wrongdoing but later pleaded guilty to fraud by abuse of a position of trust.
Judge Julie Clemitson sentenced her to three years and four months behind bars.
The judge told her: "At 56 years of age having never been in court before, it is a great shame you appear here today relating to such a serious offence.
"That sum of money was the best part of half a million pounds. You received that money and you put it straight in a savings account.
"But within a relatively short space of time you started to spend it."
The judge added that some of the money went on "pure extravagance" and said: "You spent the entirety of the inheritance. I'm told now there is absolutely nothing left."
The court heard that four months after receiving the sum of money, Walker transferred £137,000 into another bank account.
She then spent £237,551 at the Park Dean caravan site in Whitley Bay, North Tyneside.
A further £30,000 was withdrawn in cash.
The court heard that £10,000 was also spent in supermarkets and £800 was paid to Sunderland Football Club.
Lorraine Mustard, defending, said: "This is not a lady who is without her own difficulties.
"There has been a constant experience of bereavement upon bereavement which have impacted on her mental health status."
The court heard that Walker paid for her another person's medical treatment to help him and address the sadness she had been feeling.
Ms Mustard added: "She has never experienced custody before. This period of custody will have a significant effect upon her.”