But behind all of this David Archer was stealing large sums from his employer.
The reputation of the divorced father-of-six was impeccable until recently. However, some suspicions arose about the man 4 years ago when he was questioned by council officers about the payments made to two charities. The father-of-six was able to make well over £230,000 during a timespan of more than six years (from 2004 to 2010) by routing funds into bogus accounts of playground equipment suppliers.
Inquiries revealed that the sum of £232,456 was stolen in the name of two bogus organisations which were registered to his home in Chelmsford: Maldon Gold Plus and Essex Play Council and Chelmsford. The money ended up in his own bank account as well as in his now ex-wife Nicola. The stolen funds now have to be recovered and the council confirmed it will seek to recover it in one form or another.
The ratepayers’ money were destined for playgrounds. After admitting fraud and stealing large sums from his former employer, David Archer received a three year sentence. During his trial it was also noted that the man did not spend the stolen money on a lavish lifestyle. The payments almost doubled, dishonestly, the former council employee’s monthly salary.