A man from South Wales who has been pretending to be in coma for 2 years in order to avoid court was recently caught red-handed in his game.
Police in Swansea say that 47-year old Alan Knight – who was standing trial for systematically duping his elderly neighbor out of $65,000 in three years – told authorities that he had injured his spine in a garage door accident, which paralyzed him from the neck down and caused him seizures that occasionally puts him into coma. With this story, he successfully tricked them into paying him benefits as a quadriplegic.
His wife, who knew all about her husband’s conning, also played along with the whole charade by ‘caring’ for him in hospital and pushing him in a wheelchair in and out of court (below).
But after he was caught on several CCTV footage cams shopping at supermarkets and holidaying with his family (as you can see in the pic below), officers tried ‘at least twice’ to nab him and bring him to court. But each time they tried, he would then admit himself in a hospital claiming that his condition has worsened.
While in hospital, doctors soon discovered that their ‘coma’ patient was doing things too incredible for someone in his condition – he was eating, wiping his face and even writing.
After he was told that he would stand trial even if he was present in court or not, Knight finally showed up on Tuesday on a wheelchair, with his neck in a brace, unaware that his game was up a long time ago. After exposing his charade, Judge Thomas of the Swansea Crown Court branded him ‘a very accomplished and determined actor.’
Knight was left with no choice but to plead guilty to 19 separate charges of forgery, fraud and theft over more than a year from November 2008. He will be sentenced next month.
‘In my entire career this is the most calculated, long-term deception of a vulnerable, elderly neighbour I have ever seen,’ said lead detective in the case Harry Paul. ‘He had constantly avoided court for two years, costing police, the NHS and the court system thousands of pounds.’