Sacked policeman, 40, who stole £64,000 from hotels to fund his cocaine and prostitute addictions is jailed for more than two years

  • James Hughes became a hotel manger after sacking from West Yorkshire police
  • He was fired for using a police computer to find women’s contact details  
  • As manager of Plas Nanteos Mansion in Wales he stole £24,000 from the hotel 
  • He then moved to a London hotel, where he stole £40,000 from a safe  

James Hughes (pictured), 40, became a hotel manager after he was fired from the West Yorkshire police force for using a work computer to find ‘an alarming number’ of women’s contact details

A fired policeman and ‘sex pest’ has been jailed for more than two years after stealing £64,000 from hotels to fund his cocaine and prostitute addictions. 

James Hughes, 40, became a hotel manager after he was fired from the West Yorkshire police force for using a work computer to find ‘an alarming number’ of women’s contact details.   

Hughes used the details to bombard women with messages asking them out and was convicted of dishonesty and misconduct in a public officer in 2012, a court heard.

He sent one of the women 1,500 messages in just three months and was sentenced at Leeds Crown Court to 12 months in prison. 

After he was released, he became a live-in hotel manager at the Plas Nanteos Mansion in Aberystwyth, where he stole £24,000. 

Prosecutor Tom Scapens said Hughes stole from the venue by using a ‘sophisticated’ and ‘well thought-through’ system of deleting bookings and switching customers’ payments to himself. 

But Swansea Crown Court heard he was rumbled after fellow workers discovered he had been sacked from the police and had a conviction for misconduct in a public office. 

The court heard Hughes, who spent his stolen cash on cocaine and prostitutes, left the post in Aberystwyth but found another job in London, where he stole around £40,000 from a safe at the Coulsdon Manor Hotel in December 2019 in Croydon.

Hughes, of Helmsley, York, admitted two counts of theft from an employer. 

Mr Scapens said that while working as a cop Hughes contacted ‘an alarming number of women’ and his victims described him as a ‘sex pest’. 

He then became a live-in hotel manager at the Plas Nanteos Mansion in Aberystwyth where he stole £24,000

Mr Scapens said: ‘The money [from the Plas Nanteos Mansion] had been subsequently spent on professional sex workers.’ 

Ffion Tomos, defending, said Hughes was ‘addicted’ to paying for sex with high class escorts and spent money on cocaine.

She said: ‘He is locked into a self-destructive pattern. He feels he has to provide them with a certain lifestyle so they stay with him.’

The court heard Hughes, who spent his stolen cash on cocaine and prostitutes, left the post in Aberystwyth but found another job in London where he stole around £40,000 from a safe at the Coulsdon Manor Hotel (pictured) in December 2019 in Croydon

‘He is driven by the need to be appreciated and approved of.’

Judge Geraint Walters said Hughes’s crimes were driven by his ‘liking for cocaine’ and ‘addiction’ to sex with prostitutes.

He said: ‘This addiction is unusual but nevertheless real.’

Hughes was jailed for two-and-a-half years and a proceeds of crime application to reclaim his ill-gotten gains was ordered.

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