Matthew Thomas Sprinting While off sick
Video footage allegedly of a former Commonwealth Games athlete sprinting while he was claiming thousands of pounds in sick pay has been showed to jurors.
The video was secretly filmed by Newham Council, who claim Matthew Thomas received £13,892 during six months’ paid leave from its payroll department.
The 33-year-old had told the council he had injured his back after falling from a ladder in November 2007.
But the secret footage shows an athlete, alleged to be Mr Thomas, pounding down a running track at top speed in May 2008.
The jury at Inner London Crown Court also saw a video of the sprinter working as a youth running coach at a Metropolitan Police training session in April 2008.
Matthew Thomas is alleged to be seen coaching young athletes
Mr Thomas is alleged to be seen coaching young athletes
Newham Council also claims Mr Thomas continued to run in competitions while off work.
Sky News reporter Amy Lewis said an investigating officer told the court Mr Thomas had admitted working outside of his employment and training the youngsters.
Outside the court in east London, she said: “Mr Thomas said he did that to instil values in them.
“(But) the prosecution say this is about fraud and dishonesty (and that) clearly he was taking on an active life whilst being off sick.”
Mr Thomas, who ran for the same club as Olympic champion Christine Ohuruogu and represented St Lucia in 2006’s Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, denies 11 counts of fraud.
The trial continues.