Ex-Ripon Mayor in court on fraud charge

Former Ripon Mayor, Coun Andrew Williams.
Former Ripon Mayor, Coun Andrew Williams.

Former Mayor of Ripon Coun Andrew Williams faces trial at crown court after pleading not guilty to a charge of fraud by abuse of position.

The city and borough councillor appeared before Harrogate Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday to enter the plea regarding an alleged incident involving funds raised in Ripon during the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebration in June 2012 when he was Mayor.

The 43-year-old – of Pine View, Locker Lane – stands accused of intending to make a gain for himself or another by failing to deposit with the council £220 takings received from John Taylor of C & M Ices, Harrogate, thereby abusing his position in which he was expected to safeguard or not to act against the financial interests of the city council.

The alleged offence, said to have been committed between June 3 and November 1 last year, was said by court chairman Alison Stockdale to be too serious to remain in magistrates’ jurisdiction.

She sent Williams for trial at York Crown Court where he will make an initial appearance on November 18.

He was allowed bail in the meantime on condition he does not have any contact with Mr Taylor.