Man stole dead brother's identity - 'shame'

PUBLISHED: 12:00 09 June 2011




THE mother of a man from Weston who stole the identity of his dead brother in a desperate bank fraud says she will never forgive him.

Margaret Harris says her son Ashley Morton has ‘brought shame on the family’ after forging details of his older brother Oliver to open a Barclay’s bank account.

The 28-year-old used his brother’s identity to set up a provisional driving licence to get authorisation for the account, which he claimed to need after being refused an updgrade on his existing account.

Oliver, who attended Worle Community School with Ashley, died in 1997 of cardio-respiratory arrest and epilepsy aged just 17.

At Bristol Crown Court last Friday, Morton pleaded guilty to fraud, forgery and possessing an identity document with intent.

The court heard how he had also listed his brother’s name on the electoral register in an attempt for a Visa card – but was refused.

His mother, Margaret, who lives in Selworthy Road, said Morton’s actions had ‘blackened the name’ of her dead son.

She said: “There is not a day which goes by when I don’t think about Oliver, he is remembered so fondly by everyone in the family.

“I simply can’t believe what Ashley has done, we were completely unaware, it has brought shame on the family.

“The next time he wants help from me, I won’t be there for him.”

Morton was listed as living at Worthy Road in the town, but his family has disputed that, saying it is the address of his sister and he no longer lives there.

Mrs Harris, aged 53, said: “We don’t know where he is, I haven’t heard from him in months, he kept this all a secret.

“We only found out when it was reported in the media, everyone in the family is completely stunned by this. I don’t think I can I take him back after this.”

The Mercury called Morton and put his family’s feelings to him, but he refused to answer and hung up the phone.

At court, the judge heard how Morton used the bank account he set up to deposit and withdraw cash, but did not cause any financial loss to the bank.

Morton was given a 12-month community order, with 150 hours unpaid work and £300 costs.

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